Found a knife

We found that knife in the end – when we arrived in the IoW, it was sitting on the draining board, all washed up.  I suppose our builders must have borrowed it – I hope for food purposes rather than opening cans of paint.

Here is the knife
Here is the knife

It’s funny but no one seems to make this kind of knife – about a four inch long blade which is rounded at the end.  During our search, my husband bought a set of three Wusthof knifes (they were very reduced) and the middle one was about the same size but had a longer, pointier blade.

At least we'll be able to do some marvellous pumpkin carving this year
At least we’ll be able to do some marvellous pumpkin carving this year

Not a whole lot else to report really.  I’ve done as you suggested, Kal, and split those chives in the front garden – I put some in the herb garden, left some where they were and put some others in another bed.  I’d never realised that chives were separate bulb plants but I suppose it makes sense.

I didn’t take any photos of the garden because it was raining rather hard.

I’ve also done some pruning of my herbs (English mace, oregano, rosemary, thyme and sage) and have put the clippings in the compost bin.  I had a go at turning the compost but I don’t know how effective I was.  There seems to be quite a lot of compost from the middle downwards and I have loads of worms.

My Mum says that she is quite worried about the worms in her compost bin.  She has one of those black dalek bins and the worms keep going up into the ridges of the lid.  She thinks it’s because they want a rest but I think that they are too hot.  In summer, they cook and then stink the whole bin out.

The meadow once cleared

So here is a picture of my meadow, now that all the plants have been cleared and taken to the dump (I ended up filling two big builders’ sacks).

Meadow
Meadow

It will look like this all Autumn and Winter (basically, terrible) and then will perk up once we get to Spring.  I still have a few foxgloves, which I hope will flower next year.

I’ve also weeded the lower garden (the one with the Acers) and the herb garden and have put the shredded bush clippings on top to try to suppress the weeds somewhat.

Lower garden
Lower garden
Herb garden
Herb garden

I have made one awesome discovery – the violets I’d put in the lower garden have (on the whole) survived!   They were just hiding behind a bunch of weeds.  This is good news, I’d assumed the slugs had got them.

My husband is pleased with the oregano growing in the herb garden (it probably needs a prune soon).  The thyme is also doing well.  For some reason lemon thyme doesn’t do very well in my garden, despite being in a dry, sunny spot.  Do any of you know why this is?

Our lovely friends left this morning and another set of lovely friends are turning up at noon.  I’d better go and check the washing.

Herb garden

My herb garden (version 2) is looking okay, if not spectacular.  The chervil is Done, the coriander is Nearly Done and it all needed a bit of weeding.

I weeded after taking this picture
I weeded after taking this picture

The basil is in flower and is still in good nick, probably because I planted it right next to the drip line.  The mace has got rather leggy and I’ve threaded it between some railings next to the herb garden so it doesn’t block all light to the common thyme.  The parsley and oregano are in good shape (but oregano nearly always does) and the sage looks woeful (it doesn’t seem to like this spot).  The rosemary is pretty much at the stage where I can start taking sprigs for cooking.

In another spot, I have some lemon thyme which hasn’t been doing all that well.  I find this surprising – thyme is a mediterranean plant that doesn’t much like water and July was the driest month EVER in the Isle of Wight.

Lemon thyme after I cut back most of the brown stuff
Lemon thyme after I cut back most of the brown stuff

Herb haul

After a bit of umming and ahhing, I decided that, no, the rosemary was not going to survive.  Particularly as I am not in the IoW all the time and so don’t have time to tend it carefully.  I cut off what I could and put the springs in a freezer bag in the fridge.  I hope they don’t go mouldy.

An upside (as pointed out by Kal) is that I get to start again.  So here it is.

Herb haul
Herb haul

You are looking at:

  • Parsley (curly);
  • Garlic chives (sometimes called Chinese chives);
  • Coriander;
  • Rosemary;
  • Oregano (Aureum and Hot&Spicy);
  • Sage (Tricolor);
  • Thyme (Common – looks a bit messy – and Golden);
  • French tarragon;
  • Chervil;
  • English mace; and
  • Basil.

Some of these, I know what to do with.  Some I don’t.  I’ve never used chervil but it seems to be one of the few herbs that survives in shade.  And it has pretty leaves.  I’m a bit short of thyme generally so I really hope that the thyme survives in the herb garden.  English mace is a different thing from the outer husk of nutmeg – although the sign said it could be used instead of nutmeg – and is meant to be quite strong tasting.

New herb garden
New herb garden

At the same time, I bought some more rosemary to go in a sunny, dry bit at the back of the rose garden, hyssop to replace some that died in one of my flowerbeds and a lavender (Edelweiss) to go in the spot where the builders stood on my rosemary.