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To rediscover real food, regain the habit
of cooking from scratch with locally sourced
ingredients, and free myself from the
banality of the supermarket.

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Under cover

August 17, 2013

For a while now, I have had two vegetable troughs under cover, with hoops and fine netting, and two open. This suited what I was growing; unfortunately, this year the cats have discovered what a wonderful litter tray my open troughs can be. Considering that I am trying to grow veg, I find this less than appetizing!

So a few weeks ago, I bought hoops and netting for the other two troughs. This time I bought butterfly netting, which is cheaper and lets in small insects for pollination. As the dimensions are identical, I can swap round the fine insect netting and butterfly netting as I see fit.

Unfortunately, I have been suffering with a bad back for the last few weeks, so I didn’t get to fit the hoops – it’s not a heavy job, but it does mean leaning over, which is exactly what I am having trouble with. Anyway, I started on the job today, and completed it in 3 sessions.

Part of that time was dealing with the worst of the troughs, which despite my best efforts had turned into a real cat toilet! I started doing a sift job, but it was full of turds, so I ended up removing the top layer of loose earth completely – about 2 inches. What was beneath that was fine, and I’ll get some new topsoil tomorrow. It is a bit of a waste, but I really don’t want cat poo near my veggies.

It also meant that I dumped a couple of plants, as they were in the way – my courgettes, which have done so well this year, but were beginning to look bedraggled. Having fitted nets means that I can’t really have plants hanging over the edge of the troughs, but that is a small price to pay for keeping it clean.

Hopefully, that will be the end of it all, although I would like to see the cats’ faces when they jump off the neighbour’s fence and collide with a net!
2013-08-18 12.16.16

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