Discover more from The Barracks
KW-22 Beans, tomatoes, potatoes; repeat
and two short stories of adventures outside the barracks
I got slightly distracted this week. A friend asked if I wanted to jump in on a trip to the garden centre. In a car. Going somewhere, anywhere, and not having to cycle there is absolutely is not the sort of thing that this pirate is not going to jump at.
Well, there was nothing at the garden centre that I either wanted or could afford (there was a really beautiful olive tree for many hundreds of euros…) , but it was nice to check out the plants. On the way back we “just stopped off quickly” at one of those pile-them-high-sell-them-cheap discount warehouses gunwale-high stuffed with poor-quality injection-moulded plastic household items of indiscriminate variety, colour and form. You know the sort of place. The one where every item holds a mysterious and unique purpose that you didn’t know you needed until you saw it. Anyway, outside, they had rack upon rack of tomato, pepper and chilli plants; potted soft fruit bushes and - AND - three fig trees for €3.33 each. So I bought them. One of them is now in the orchard and the other two score 15 points each in the Big Chief Eye Spy Book of the Barracks. Find them if you can!
Yesterday, I took myself off to an open air swimming pool which I did not know until very recently exists. There was a 50m pool, a beach volleyball court, not too many screaming kids (mostly flinging themselves off the diving boards) and a kiosk selling a watery brown liquid under the name of coffee for €2.60 for about 100ml. It was great. And I swam 1200m, which I am not at all un-happy about, seeing as I am very old, and that was my first time in a pool in years! I was hoping to do 500 meters, but it was going well, so I thought I might push through for 800. Eight hundred became a thousand, and I figured I couldn’t stop there, because it looked too deliberate. The cycle there it is fun (that damn cycling thing again!) - I hit 50kph on the way there - and no fun at all on the way back. In 12km, there are 354m of ascent, which makes it just about as evil as the Col du Tourmalet and I want my red polka dot jersey pleaseandthankyouverymuch. I think yesterday, I had something like a 2000 calorie deficit. Adieu, winter love handles!
(aside - ze Germans call love handles Speckrollen - bacon rolls unless you acquire them by overeating through sorrow in which case they call them Kummerspeck - grief bacon. Of course they have a word for it!)
The food producing side of pirate life this week involves
Possibly adding another 20 tomato plants to the potager
Getting some more root seeds in the ground. I didn’t get them all in last week
Successional sowings of lettuces
I quite fancy digging some more sunken cold-frames, but I should definitely prettify the ones I have first
My main source of water has dried up. Move to the secondary one
I have some shit shovelling to do
Weed, mow, mulch
Beans, tomatoes, potatoes
Be nice to piggies. They are fine, doing well, but definitely starting to feel the summer on their backs!
Now that summer is basically upon us, it’s time to get into some sort of a routine. I like to make sure that the three essentials get at least a half day of care each every week - that is, the potatoes, the beans and the tomatoes. Maybe earthing up. Probably weeding, and definitely pinching out side shoots of tomatoes. The ones in the greenhouse are only about 10 - 15cm tall, but they are looking super healthy, and are already putting on side shoots. It’s good to remove them as soon as you can, but I find that if I rigorously stick to a once-a-week plan, then I do get to keep on top of it. Don’t forget, I already have about 60 tomato plants, and I may add another 20 this week.
All this will change if the rotovator comes home this week. Which it won’t. For sure.
Thank you to everyone for sharing this last week. We actually only added one new subscriber, but the number of people reading it went up a lot. Apparently, some of my subscribers forget to read their barracks newsletter but like to be reminded! So thank you for reminding them :)
Until next time then
Much piratey love, your