Some mowing and some strawberry beds (559)
by Max Akroyd
November, when eclipsed by the dark mass of a 9 to 5 proper job or a school day, is a pretty hopeless month. When my perspective on it was confined to longing looks out of office windows or the narrow aperture of freedom that was the weekend, it looked and felt uniformly dark, cold and wet. Now I am unburdened by the grind (and money) associated with a career, and labour in a field rather than a stuffy office, November has shown a different side.
Today I mowed the grass. In mid-November. It was windy, but distinctly warm: the sun made playful appearances in the tops of the trees. More importantly, the field gave up enough green stuff into the mower box to mulch a lot of the broad bean and allium trenches. This will protect the soil from the pounding of winter rains and the big hairy feet belonging to Poppy, our Fauve de Bretagne, who shows a complete lack of interest in the condition of my soil and walks all over it in pursuit of moths.
Having mowed over a third of the paths, I then headed to the Triangle to continue the strawberry trenches. To vary the pressure on my back I used a spade, a very peculiar object when you’re used to an azada, and completed the target of another ten metres. There’s just another ten to go and I can plant out the new plants which will make 130 metres of strawberry bed in total: a good amount of potential currency in the barter economy to come.