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muttonpunk goes to burns night

I have fleeced the passion vine. I have cloched the beans. But the real excitement occurred while taking down the neighbour's willow. The long central trunk flipped over the bark hinge, taking out half of my poor rhododendron in the process. I've packed it with bark and moss and wool to keep out the frost and it's just fingers crossed now. It'll rot or not. They're notoriously difficult to kill and (like my bottle bush) should never be allowed to set a single root outside the pot, but the toughest old bush can die on a split like this.

While investigating what to do about the damage, I ended up ordering grafting tape off the internet and seven M27 dwarfing rootstocks because well I'm pruning a marvellously delicious* apple tree next week and it's got to be worth a try. The Laxton's apple turned up; a beautiful, healthy tree of a seriously decent size, all wrapped up in shredded junk mail and black plastic: I'm going to need a bigger pot!

new apple tree

I also went to a Burns night where I discovered the heady pleasure of Port Finish whisky while discussing damp, restructures and astonishing exotic glassware. Rich and reeking! But enough of the hedonisms of trees and barrels.

Let's talk 356 days of house.

More wallpaper stripped from stairwell and hall (not done yet).
Paint scraped from stairs and hall (not done yet).
Rotten skirting ripped off to see what was behind (more rotten wood, apparently under the plaster; very confused now).
Cracks and holes revealed ready for assessment and filling (hall).
Paint knocked off the verandah door (might have to use stripper, on reflection).
Our half of the neighbour's massive willow chopped, smashed and taken to the tip.
More sweet peas planted.

*Not its actual name. I have NO IDEA what it is, so I'm going to call it a Jason's Orange until told otherwise.

Comments

( 5 worms — Feed the birds )
shermarama
1st Feb, 2012 19:59 (UTC)
Grafting your own trees feels like a level of horticulture I could never aspire to. How hard is it in practice, or is that you about to be finding out?
cleanskies
1st Feb, 2012 20:33 (UTC)
The principle is dirt simple - cut, tape, hope - it is literally ancient technology, pre-dating written history - but in practice, I suspect that there is a high rate of failure. We'll see! This is my first go.
a_llusive
2nd Feb, 2012 13:33 (UTC)
Glad the apple arrived in good shape
Best of luck with it - I'm sorely tempted to copy your lead on that.
cleanskies
2nd Feb, 2012 21:58 (UTC)
well, I really think a garden should have a fruit tree
and I can very much recomend Victoriana Nursery
cleanskies
2nd Feb, 2012 22:20 (UTC)
lots of fruit trees on offer at this time of year
( 5 worms — Feed the birds )