Creeping along

On Wednesday I didn’t plan on working in the garden because I wanted a rest from it. At the same time I had no electrical job offers for the day either. The whole day would be spent doing well practically nothing. However, around three o’clock I couldn’t resist putting on a coat and taking the garden fork and some smaller tools and going over to where I had left-off a few days ago in digging out some bulbs. I decided to spend at least an hour seeing what progress I could make in removing what remains in the corner section of the long flowerbed. I got as far as this…..corner-plot-2

Only a small area really from the angle in the stone edging up to the bright stone marker a metre to the right and roughly as far back as the tree with the two trunks. The other tree to its right is a small-leaved holly of some type which is in need of some radical pruning or complete removal. I might just remove it and replace it with something else. To the right of where I had reached the ground is mainly populated with montbretia plants though there are some bluebells in there too. I will be glad when I finally reach the end…just behind the wheelie bin!corner-plot-1

The soil in the area is riddled with tree roots which have made removing the bluebell bulbs more difficult. I am hoping though that the montbretia bulbs will not be so deep beneath the surface but I will have to wait and see. Once I have finished digging everything out I will still have to be vigilant throughout the year to dig out any I have missed. Take my advice, if you don’t want plants that take over your garden don’t plant montbretia and especially don’t plant bluebells!

Shirley Anne


Talking rubbish

Polski: Wysypisko odpadów w Łubnej

Notwithstanding any reservations my readers may have regarding any of my posts I am talking about real rubbish in this one. I cannot remember when it was I first saw a wheelie bin or the time when they were delivered to our door when the recycling craze took off. It was the wisest thing we as human beings have done in recent times. So much waste was being disposed off into land-fill sites when it should have been recycled or not produced in the first place. Many materials dumped on waste heaps will take years to decompose or even not decompose at all with detrimental results for Nature. Some materials were even chemically hazardous and a potential hazard to us all if ever they found their way into the food chain. Great strides have been taken in eliminating what gets dumped into the ground but even so there are still those who will blatantly ignore the safety issues and ‘fly tip’ their waste. For the majority of us recycling has become much easier and as long as we place our waste in the correct bins for disposal or recycling all should run smoothly. However even doing this seems to be a problem for some. They either ignore the fact that materials have to be separated or they are unsure as which bin they should go in.

English: Green wheelie bin collection day, Col...
Green wheelie bin collection day, (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Our local authority has made it a little easier now to decide into which bin we place things as we now have only three choices, green waste for leaves, weeds, small plants and cuttings, recyclable waste for metal cans, glass, cardboard, paper and plastics and finally non-recyclable waste which will undergo a filtration before it is finally dumped in a land-fill site. All these things are sorted into the three bins supplied to us but are then sorted further at the authority’s waste collection site. When we dispose of items at home some are easy to identify and we know into which bin they should go but some are not. This is a fault in the manufacturing and packaging by suppliers. We buy butter which is wrapped with a paper and metal combination which cannot be separated one from the other unless the paper component is burned off. Why produce such a wrapping in the first place? Why not use a plastic which can be recycled or a plant by-product such as cellophane which will decompose naturally? We try our best to recycle but come on manufactures we need your help too!

Shirley Anne

Storm after the calm

English: Piles of wood chippings, Brokes Wood
Piles of wood chippings, Brokes Wood (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I know, I know, the usual saying is the other way round, ‘The calm before the storm’ but on Monday the day here started beautifully and ended up the opposite. Brilliant sunshine, slight winds for the first half of the day turned later to cooler and a wetter time. It was forecast to pass during the night with a return to brighter though brisker weather to follow for a few days. Well it is the UK! For a short time I sat out on the patio with a book and a cup of coffee but after a while I could hear the sound of an alarm of the type usually fitted to large vehicles to sound when the vehicle is reversing. It sounded as if a large vehicle was slowly reversing down the long cul-de-sac located at the top of our road. It was Monday so it was more than likely the green waste collection crew. I had placed our two wheelie bins out into the road on Sunday evening but I decided to check to see if there was any more green waste I could dispose of before they were emptied. I did find something and I placed it in the bin. I waited for the vehicle to draw up near to the house as by this time they weren’t far off. I collected the empty bins, placing one of them in the rear garden and leaving one in the front. A couple of days ago I mentioned something in my post about the possibility of covering the exposed soil in the two flowerbeds in the front garden with wood chippings. We had a couple of large bags of chippings in the garage and a couple of smaller bags filled with the chippings produced  by ourselves a few months ago when I had pruned back two of the apple trees in the rear garden. I thought I might as well get the job done whilst the weather was fine and whilst I had the spare time but before I did that I folded up and placed in the recyclable waste bins some of the large cardboard boxes that we couldn’t fit into the bins when they were last emptied. I then began speading the wood chippings and bark in the flowerbeds. It didn’t take me too long though I had barely enough to do the two beds. I think I will have to buy another small bag of the chippings to finish it but at least everywhere was covered. By the time I had finished the weather had already turned dull and overcast, ready for the heavy rain to follow later.

Shirley Anne

Oh no you’re not!

English: Waste collection truck Polski: Śmieciarka
Waste collection truck (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

After a quiet weekend at home I was expecting to receive requests for my electrical services on Monday but no-one had called. That meant I would be at home on Monday looking for something to do. Our local council issued a new waste collection rota a few weeks ago and Monday was set to be the fortnightly day on which green waste was collected. We have two wheelie bins for this service. Normally only one is given per household but another can be requested for those who may have more green waste than most. We don’t usually have to put out two for emptying except at the height of summer or in autumn when there is a lot of leaves to sweep up so at this time of year it is unusual to have to put out two bins. Nevertheless we had two of them filled with garden waste so they needed to be out in the street to be emptied. I do that first thing in the morning but I had forgotten to do it this time. However, I did remember at around ten o’clock and as the crew hadn’t yet turned up to empty the bins I still had time to put them out. One of them was already in the front garden and the other was out in the rear garden. Both were full. I had to take the bin through the garage in which I park my van for it has a ramp and is the easiest way anyway. I grabbed the remote control for the automatic door and the key for the rear door of the garage but having got inside the garage with the bin I found the automatic door wouldn’t open. I tried the spare control but it made no difference. I returned into the boiler room which is the normal access to the house from the rear garden and I saw that the RCD unit in the panel supplying the external power outlets and lights on the side of the garden behind the garage had tripped. As the garage circuits are fed from this same panel too it meant there was no power in the garage to supply the automatic door. Of course it needed investigating immediately at the very least to enable me to drive the van should I need to. I grabbed my tools from the van and removed the cover on the panel and separated the garage supply from that supplying the outside power units and was able to temporarily reinstate power to the garage. I could now open the door and take out the bins. Fortunately the crew had still not arrived to empty them. I returned to the rear garden and began to remove the covers to the power outlet boxes and found water had managed to get inside one of them. This is what had caused the RCD to trip and remove power to the garage in the process. It was very cold in the garden and by this time I had donned my coat for the half-hour or so it took me to replace a faulty socket and do some remedial work to the boxes. Isn’t it funny that you only feel how cold you are when you return indoors? Going to sit on your backside? Oh no you’re not…….Oh and did the bins get emptied? Well actually no. Most of the residents in the street, like myself, forgot the first day for collection of green waste is scheduled for 2nd March!

Shirley Anne

Nothing to do, yeah sure!

Dream Journal - Time Management & Learn New Things
Dream Journal – Time Management & Learn New Things (Photo credit: AlisonQuine)

Again on Wednesday I had no work scheduled and had an extra lie in bed missing out on a proper breakfast. The weather forecast was promising so I decided to do some work at home. When we had the roller door fitted a couple of weeks ago it still left a large gap over the door to be filled with timber. In Thursday’s post I mentioned the fact that E and I went shopping on Monday for the materials needed to  do that same job. It took a few hours to do but we finally succeeded and now all that is needed is to paint it. We had opted to use wood as opposed to plastic although at some point in the future plastic could be used to cover the wood if we wanted to do that. So far all we have done is to treat the wood with a preserver/wood worm repellent and we will paint it some time in the near future. E was keen to prune back some overgrown trees  that are growing in the border on the approach to the garage where we had been working so after that work was complete we set about the trees with a saw then cut the branches smaller to fit in the garden waste wheelie bins. I have to admit to being rather tired after the day’s work but then I had to go indoors to prepare a roast dinner! A much more enjoyable task and set aside a plate for our youngest son who occasionally asks if we can prepare a meal for him, usually because he has had a busy day and has little time left for himself. We obviously don’t mind doing that for him. The days go slowly when there is nothing to do but they can be rewarding when there is. I get complete satisfaction when I have achieved something and done something with my time rather than mulling about doing nothing. I like to rest too, it isn’t all about work but I do find that all rest and no work is just as bad as the other way round! Nothing to do? Yeah, sure but for me that doesn’t work.

Shirley Anne