We've started cropping onions. Nice big juicy ones. So big they can be cut in half and last two days. Rosie's Pak Choi grew well. A form of cabbage, Rosie stir fries them (with the dreaded garlic) and they make a tasty addition to our meals.
We would have cropped more Pak Choi if we had not had a caterpillar attack. These creatures are worse than slugs and can lay waste to your greens in no time at all. I planted the Pak Choi at the back of the polytunnel in the hope that cabbage root fly wouldn't venture in that far. That proved to be correct. However, moths and butterflies love the heat and laid their eggs there. Next year, I'll need some netting.
Elsewhere, we are painting the outside of the house. We couldn't agree on what colour to paint it. White would have made it stick out like a sore thumb on the side of the hill. Yellow is the same as 90% of Irish houses. I like to be different. Green is unlucky. Rosie wanted pink. I'm not gay. End of story. In the end we agreed to paint the house the same colour as the concrete plaster covering it. The house will look no different but at least it will have a weather proof covering.
In finishing the stone drain recently we were left with plenty of spare soil. On one side of the track leading to our house the soil was a mixture of clay and sand. That was taken to the compost heap and is used to mix in with the compost. The other side of the track was next to the septic tank and the soil there was black. This is being used to plant trees with. Most of the saplings in my polytunnel have now been planted out.
July was a fun time. I was out on Finbarr's yacht a few times. We caught a few mackerel. Most of our friends have birthdays in July (myself included) so last month was very busy in the party department. It gave us all a chance to nose around everyone's vegetable garden and pick up tips. My no-dig gardening proved popular. Alfred's building a chimney in his greenhouse for a wood burning stove to keep his winter vegetables warm. Winnie has green manure growing on part of his patch to "give it a rest for the year". Finbarr has a containers only greenhouse that I might copy next year.
My father is here at the moment, ridding the house of some very creative wiring that the previous owners had put in. By the end of August, the whole house will be insulated, radiators connected to the boiler and the upstairs floor will be complete. There, I've published it. It now has to be done.