I want more things – fancy things…

My tall and mighty fine mustard cover crop
My tall and mighty fine mustard cover crop

A garden shredder would be nice, it would help alleviate the pain I am currently experiencing in my finger.  Either that or some kind of gardening guillotine.  The more I think about it the more the want becomes a need.  I need a chopper.

You can almost see the seeds fattening up and becoming viable - well not any more!  Mwah ha ha!
You can almost see the seeds fattening up and becoming viable – well not any more!    Mwah ha ha!

My mustard cover crop grew a lot faster than I had anticipated or maybe it is time has passed by a lot faster than I had realised, after all it was about 6 weeks since I sowed the seed.  It had burst into flower and was beginning to show the first signs of wanting to set seeds, so there was no time to waste.  I had to do something.  Having a bed riddled with mustard seed would be a nightmare for the next couple of seasons.  They needed to come out.

A mountain of mustard
A mountain of mustard

Pulling them out was the easy bit as the soil beneath was quite loose from a season of hosting potatoes.  But digging them into to the soil, now that seemed like hard work.   Effort would be required.  I really didn’t feel like expending too much effort so I decided to chop the stalks and scatter them across the bed and then turn them in.  It seemed a much easier option.  The easy option never is.

Why won't you dig in - you are supposed to be dug in!
Why won’t you dig in – you are supposed to be dug in!

My secateurs were ok for a while but as the stalks were soft there was a lot of stalk mashing and wrenching going on.  So I decided to use scissors.  This is where I ran into a few problems.  While the scissors soon snipped through a mountain of mustard, my poor wee fingers weren’t used to such a repetitive chore and I found myself not just with blisters but burst blisters.  The impact of this has such a huge knock on affect as typing letters in the vicinity of the K button causes me to wince with pain.

Oh cripes now the lupin is flowering and wanting to set seed - my fingers won't want to go through all the chopping again - I desperately need a shredder!
Oh cripes now the lupin is flowering and wanting to set seed – my fingers won’t want to go through all the chopping again – I desperately need a shredder!

But not one to let a little bit of discomfort stand in my way, I spread out my mountain of clippings evenly across my bed and tried to dig it in.  I say tried, as the soil is so dry that with each turn the mustard just returned to the surface and the effort of digging that I was trying to avoid in the beginning was becoming too much for someone who didn’t want to dig in the first place.  So I popped the sprinklers on to moisten the soil and I shall wait a day or two for the mustard to wilt and have another go.  Hopefully my hands will have healed by then.

How most mornings start these days.
How most mornings start these days.

Come again soon – I think it may be time for the tomatoes to come down.

Sarah the Gardener  : o )

Oh one last thing – if it’s not too much to ask…  I have entered my wee shed in a Shed of the Year competition and would really appreciate your votes.  I am currently in 7th position and the competition has 6 days left, and it is such a cute wee shed!

You can vote by clicking on the facebook link below, fill in your details in the pop up and vote for my shed.

Thank you so much.  I do love my shed.

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38 thoughts on “I want more things – fancy things…

  1. Sarah, you are wonderful….I want more things too. Would we could afford a shredder…wish I could help you cut up your things. Never mind, you did it anyway. And you’ve still got your fingers. You go girl!

    1. HI Jane. I look at the lupin crop and long for a shredder. As it isn’t as tall as the mustard I’m wondering if getting in there with the lawn mower would work… hmmm.
      Cheers Sarah : o )

  2. I hope you get one, Sarah. You have a huge garden, with an intense amount of work. Best of luck.

    By the way, I tried (twice) to vote but the link goes to a dead end.

        1. Thank you so much Alys for wanting to vote for me and pointing out the problem – I should have checked the link but forgot. The prize is pretty cool – $2000 worth of air travel, and the minor prizes are tools, so maybe I’ll get my shredder! Cheers Sarah : o )

    1. Thank Julie. The mustard is supposed to have a cleansing effect in the soil. I’m not sure exactly how, but I’m hoping it will sort out the blight that struck down my spuds this year.
      The lupin has such lovely flowers, it will be a shame to chop them down.
      Cheers Sarah : o )

    1. Hi Anne. I’m not sure what would happen. I’m sure it would break down all the same, but I think one of the benefits is to add structure to the soil. I’ll probably get Hubby the Un-Gardener to dig it over a couple of times before the soil becomes cold and wet and hopefully that will incorporate it.
      Cheers Sarah : o )

  3. I love your wee shed and would be happy to vote for it but I’m one of those rare folk who aren’t on facebook. GASP! Anyway, it’s really sweet and I hope that it wins!

    1. Hi Christine.
      A year ago I didn’t have facebook and was quite proud of the fact. However when I wrote my first book the publishers told me it was best to have it, and they even gave me training on it as I was completely clueless!
      Life was a lot simpler before, but needs must…
      Have a lovely weekend.
      Cheers Sarah : o )

    1. HI Elaine. Thank you so much. I really love my wee shed.
      The chickens have been doing a great job of digging in my mustard, but I want to plant out some winter seedlings so I need to fix their fence so they can’t get out. While they are good at digging in my cover crop they scratch up my seedlings. You just can’t get good help these days!
      Cheers Sarah : o )

    1. Hi Jimmy. I was lured by the prize… I normally think twice about unnecessarily sharing my details so I understand your hesitation. I’ll take yours as a vote of support from a fellow friendly gardener who appreciates the value of a good shed!
      Have a fabulous weekend.
      Cheers Sarah : o )

    1. Hi Catherine. Thanks for voting. The competition closes today and I’m up against some pretty impressive ‘man caves’ so we shall have to see how it all goes.
      Cheers Sarah : o )

    1. Hi Angela. I’m so glad you are enjoying the book. I love my wee shed so much. It has a lovely character and was built to work well with my garden. I’m so blessed to have it!
      Cheers Sarah : o )

  4. I am with you on the mulcher idea but the problem is, the only mulcher that is going to tackle the heavy stuff is WAY out of our price range. We did have a mulcher but I ended up hurling it into the trailer and towing it triumphantly to the local waste management station (TIP) and watching with glee as it was hurled into the recycled metal section…I think you can get my drift 😉

    Great idea about the cover crop and I am going to plant one ASAP. Have you tried using loppers? A lot less energy and a lot more cutting power and fewer blisters. Still not as good or as satisfying as feeding things through a hopper and watching them shoot benignly out the other end but needs must as my grandma would have said…

    Off to put a “tick” next to your shed :).

    1. HI Fran. My mum has already advised me if I am to buy a shedder then the more expensive it is then better it is! She put a lot of research into it and then moved to garden not big enough to need one, so she didn’t buy one.
      I did buy a new sharp pair of secateurs that weren’t as worn out as my last pair and so was able to lop my way through the lupin in no time. It also helped that the lupin was more fleshy so easier to cut. And my poor fingers enjoyed the pain free experience!
      I still want a shredder though… maybe I should put in a request for mothers day. Who needs perfume and slippers anyway?
      Cheers Sarah : o )

      1. You sound like me…I want books on Permaculture and craft things and “kits” etc. for mothers day but I dare say I won’t get anything as my kids won’t remember it 😉

    1. Never mind, thanks for trying- the competition ends today, so what will be will be. Although I still think my shed is the cutest one there! However I’m not sure cute is one of the judging criteria in what is a largely “man cave’ competition!
      Cheers Sarah : o )

  5. We never do a cover crop here. I may have to try that this year. I love that shed. I will tell my facebook children to vote for you, I am not a facebook person. I may need a shed like that by the end of this summer. Have a great day.

    1. Hi Lucinda. The cover crop seems to help give something back to the soil, although you may have to do it earlier in the fall than I would so you can get to dig it in before the snow!
      The shed competition has now closed so I am waiting with baited breath. They say the winner isn’t determined by the number of votes – but it probably helped to draw attention to my shed.
      Have a lovely Easter break.
      Cheers Sarah : o )

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