It was April 2011 when we began to clear the former orchard of the impenetrable tangle of brambles, nettles, blackthorn, cherry, apple, oak and sycamore that had built up during twenty years of neglect.
Our aim was to create a healthy orchard and a vegetable garden separated by a hedge of cordon apples and pears.
With its pruned trees, cut grass and wandering chickens, the orchard now looks the part.
On the other side of the apple and pear cordons, the slow and grinding slog of clearing the mass of knotted and obstinate roots seems to have taken forever. But last week we dug over our last bed and added the compost and leafmould to complete our vegetable garden. Okay, the work in a garden never ends and I want to define paths with wooden edging and use wood chippings to make the paths easy to use. And there's more work removing the privet hedge and then preparing the surrendered ground to receive plants.
And, of course, followers of this blog will know that for the foreseeable future the 'vegetable garden' will be home to the massed ranks of herbaceous perennials we are bringing on to use in the gardens around our bungalows. It will be some time before the vegetable garden is living up to its name.
But let's focus on the positive now. The vegetable garden is finished!!!!