I left the tomatoes until the cold air had slowed them to a halt. It has been a good year for the greenhouse, an eight by six foot structure. It now needed clearing ahead of winter. I cleared some weeds from the area around it, for it is amazing how weeds manage to spring up near structures, where they cannot be as easily hoed out as can weeds in open soil. Then I moved inside and began clearing the tomato containers, after picking the last of them.. This was heavy work as the roots had tangled well into the soil and both plant and soil in almost every case came out together and had to be thrown on the compost heap together, where the rain will wash the soil from the roots.
Then the clearance begins. Weeds sneak their way in and hide behind the pots, taking advantage of the fact that the tomatoes shield them. These have to be pulled out and composted. But some of it is grass, which takes some time to pull up as individual strands are scattered in several places.
Then the heavy job has to be done. Some of the containers have compost left in them and as I grow in fresh compost each year they had to be taken to be emptied into the raised beds on the new plot, so nothing is wasted. . Then the containers have to be taken to the tap and washed out, to ensure that they are free of pests and diseases that might lurk over Winter. Most are plastic, but I have one heavy terracotta pot ,a large one, that I preferred to take in the wheelbarrow.
I did a quick check on the panelling, ensuring that there were no gaps and that everything was in place against the Winter winds. There was little to do in this task.
I still have to wash the windows and take a bit of rubbish to the tip, English parlance for the council garbage dump, but that will have to wait unto tomorrow.
I then picked some leeks for Maureen and selected two small pumpkins to give to the allotment pumpkin sale. A quick check on the sweet potato showed that it is still thriving, and I await the time to pick it, which will be when the frost damages its leaves.
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