Friday, 15 May 2009

We're not on holiday now

...which is something we keep having to remind ourselves.

Yesterday was market day, so like good French people we wandered up the hill to support our local traders. As well as a couple of day's supply of fruit, veg and meat, we bough six tomato plants from an old chap who regularly sells his garden excess in the market. These we added to the plants we bought on Tuesday - six tomato and three poivron ( sweet pepper, or capsicum) plants - and so yesterday afternoon we started gardening in France.


I doubt if this will keep us fed the next 12 months - but it's a start. Part of our lifestyle winding down is growing some of our own food, but our garden isn't suitable for growing vegetables because the "soil" is compacted gravel and dig resistant. Until we solve that issue we will be growing in pots, something we tried with varying success in London.

The other big event for the day was a visit from M. Douady, a mason from le Petit Pressigny. We are asking him to quote for replacing a couple of stone window and door frames which have eroded away, install a chimney and fireplace, and generally tidy up the appearance of all the stonework. We are pretty sure the price will take our breath away, but we are getting used to having our breath taken away by devis.

We have started unpacking, too. Not seriously, you understand, just the odd bits and pieces; wineglasses, cookware, wine and some electricals. At the moment we have nowhere to store anything so unpacking any more would be a bit of a waste. Still, it's a start. Next move will be to start using some of our furniture from London and relegate the furniture that was here to guest use. (Did I say relegate? I meant promote, of course.) This means shifting furniture. Again.

Simon

3 comments:

Jean said...

In our first year of growing veg we used a lot of pots as our veg garden is tiny. We had potatoes in an old dustbin (still do), carrots, beans, courgettes and salad in pots or troughs, cherry tomatoes and strawberries in hanging baskets. It's easier than all that digging anyway. !!

Dj Johnston, of www.djfineart.com said...

Congratulations on the move. As to digging in the soil, give it a pass—too much unnecessary hard work and woefully inefficient. The best way to setup a small garden anywhere is through the Square Foot method, or as it is often referred to in America: the French Intensive method. It is simply a matter of building boxes just wide enough to reach into the middle of from each side and filling the boxes first with soil and compost and then vegetables and flowers—some running up trellises: cucumbers, cantaloupe, tomatoes, morning glories. It is a simple and beautiful way to flood your pantry, and that of your neighbors (it is a method designed for abundance), with delicious home grown goodies. Here is a link to the most famous Square Foot gardener in America, Mel Bartholomew: http://www.squarefootgardening.com/. Enjoy the bounty.

Anonymous said...

it's beautiful to see the greenery against the limestone, is it? i bet the house is grateful to have permanent residents and that the good spirits will conspire to warm its hearth for you!

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