The weather yesterday underwent a big change. The scorching sun was been replaced by a moderate cloud cover – not overcast – and so it was been much cooler and much more pleasant for working outside. The overnight forecast showed the passage of a belt of rain so I watered in the greenhouse, but hoped that the rest of the garden would get a good soaking without my assistance.
Our Charlotte potatoes growing in bags have now shown signs of potato blight, so I have cut off all the tops and consigned them to the “non -recyclable” bin as I do not think they should go in the compost because that would just preserve the virus and spread it about at some future date when the compost gets used.
We have a Buddleia in the garden (and many other shrubs) which now badly need cutting back. Pre Covid we had our next door neighbour coming in regularly and giving us a tidy up, cutting the hedge and so forth. Covid has stopped all that and things are getting very overgrown. Over two days I have reduced myself to aches and pains and cut out a great deal of the buddleia and we will, hopefully do some more in the autumn. As always, this year, the Buddleia has flowered well and produced big spikes of dark blue flowers so it seem a terrible shame to cut it back, but it was making life difficult in getting round the garden at that point, and also resting on thr greenhouse roof. So it is now pruned, and the shreddings are on my rhubarb bed as mulch.
However, this pruning showed that at my age something a bit more than sheer physical strength on the loppers is necessary to cut through the larger diameter stems which have died and become hard wood. So I have taken the plunge and bought by mail order, a powered reciprocating saw from Screwfix. No doubt I could have got one from Amazon but I read so much adverse comment about the wealth of Amazon’s founder, and the bad conditions experienced by Amazon employees that I avoid the firm as much as I possibly can.