weeds, so many weeds!

It's been a typical weekend here in Mildew towers. Friday, got up late, watched taped House and Greys Anatomy, watched the snooker, fell asleep, woke up at six realising the whole day had gone to waste. D'oh. Saturday was much nicer and far more productive. Is it me or does the day go so much better when you actually get up in the morning? Up at eight and pots of chillies and peppers and a window box of lettuce were all done before lunchtime.

Sunday was a slighty different matter. Dave had offered to help dig but the rain had managed to scupper our plans for that. What we did manage to do though was finially move all the crap from the shed and take it to the dump. Hooray! Thankfully the giant pile of rotten carpet has also been taken to the dump, which is great for me, but I have managed to annoy the two slowworms that were using it as a home and Dave, who's car is now covered withmud and home to all sorts of creepy crawlies (I don't want to be in the car with him when he discovers the huge spider I saw) and has no hope of it ever being clean again.

It's amazing how quickly plants are growing at this time. Not the seeds I've planted you understand, the sugar snaps have yet to show and the broad beans look like they're being eaten, but the weeds are shooting up, it's getting quite overwhelming. There's only so much digging I can do in a weekend before my crappy back gives in so I need to come up with a plan to prevent the weed growth and fast. Somedays I look out on the plot and feel so overwhelmed by the amount of weeds, I just want to cover the ground with weedkiller before I start growing things there, although every time I investigate doing this, I feel guilty. But is it really bad to do that just the once? I'm quite tempted to get one of those flame thrower thingies as they look fun and this kirpi weeder looks very useful indeed but having never used these before I'd like to know how effective these are. Any good ideas readers?

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2 Responses

  1. Flame throwers do not kill the roots – so they are really on good on annuals – which will die easily if you exclude light and water – by covering areas with plastic or cardboard when you are not using them. That is what I do to help spare the old back.

    A garden designer I once met (not famous I am afraid or I would name drop he he), said that her tutor at college, told them that to use weed killer was fine.

    He likened it to taking say, a course antibiotics to get rid of a problem.

    I can see his point – but that would be fine if the problem went away for good wouldn’t it. And most of the weeds that are a pain are the real thugs of the weed world – like docks, horse radish, mares tail etc.

    I would rather try and tackle a few properly and clear a space, and keep doing bits, and the rest keep cutting down to weaken them, than ‘poison’ my little bit of heaven with more chemicals that will inevitably end up in the food I produce. On the other hand they reckon that our bodies are already so full of chemicals that can’t be got rid of what difference do a few more make.

    Me, at my age, thinks that she doesn’t want to carry any more thank you very much.

    So this posting has been a complete waste of time as I haven’t solved your problem.

  2. I’m not an expert and have had the same experience as yourself when we started out last year. I help an allotment holder, there are three of us on a large plot and this is what we have discovered:
    1 Work out your plot into squares with paths that can be wider at the start and become smaller when you need more space. Work on one square at a time and cover the rest with old carpets or similar material. As you conquer each square make certain you maintain it while you work on the next, and so on until you have controlled the whole allotment. This will take about two seasons depending on your energy and time.
    2 To prevent bending sit in the earth and fork over your plot with a hand fork and meticulously pick out everything by hand.
    3 I have discovered the Wilkinson Sword three pronged cultivator and its magic ! The gubbings it pulls up with a few strokes is considerable and the weeds sit on the top waiting for you to gather them up. The cost of a cultivator is a little more that the weedkiller you will purchase, but it lasts for ever !
    4 Control the weeds now before they flower and set seed for next year.

    Hope this helps, good luck !

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