William Hebditch - March 14th, 2018.

I saw a woodcock today. The very first one I’ve seen all winter. They are such pretty birds.Just for once British agriculture is not being blamed for the reduced numbers seen here this year. It’s the beastly Russians, well, their bad weather last breeding season. Now we can look forward to swallows and martins. I hope some make it back to New Cross.

Most of the asparagus has now been covered with polythene. Some nice bright sunshine would be good, so that the soil warms quickly and we can start cutting. It looks like it will be a late season, especially if we have this cold snap this weekend. Only a few buds are moving, Ben Vane blackcurrants and Invicta gooseberries. The honey berries are coming into flower. It will be interesting to see if they survive the frosts over the next few days. They were bred in Saskatchewan ( can’t ever pronounce that right) and are supposed to be frost hardy to -5 centigrade.

The other thing we’re looking forward to is our first seakale. We’re blanching it under polythene. The wild stuff, unblanched, isĀ  rather bitter, it’s all those glucosinolates which are sooo good for you. Hopefully our blanched seakale will have most of the good stuff but a little less of the harshness. Time will tell.

We’ve had a tragedy at East Lambrook, the lovely thatched cottage opposite the Rose and Crown burnt down yesterday. Our hearts go out to the owners.

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