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Resurrection of the Rhubarb!

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Richard Cadey Richard Cadey | 15:15 UK time, Friday, 5 August 2011

It's been three weeks now since my gardening guru Craig Holland was last in my garden dispensing advice and criticism in equal measure. In fact I'm beginning to wonder if he ever really existed at all, and whether in fact I made him up! On second thoughts that can't be the case, because I remember eating some eggs that he brought me from the chickens he keeps...

Anyway, on hand in his place was the splendid fellow Brian Petrie, who has ably stepped in to Craig's shoes, or wellies, on two previous occasions. I like Brian, he possesses Craig's great gardening sense, but none of the sarcasm that comes with it. Furthermore, when asked by Fred in last Monday's weekly Garden slot on MacAulay & Co, whether or not he felt that I was becoming a gardener he answered in the affirmative without a hint of irony! In short he's welcome back anytime.

The reason for the positive response was, in fairness to me, based on the fact that I had worked my socks off whipping the garden into shape after the volley of abuse for neglecting my duties that I suffered last week. I'd weeded the whole veg patch, and dug in some compost to add nutrients to the 'resting' piece of land where I grew the potatoes. After a month-long vacation recovering from rigours of growing the tatties, the land, Brian now suggested, was ready to have some lettuce leaves sown in there. This is in addition to the rocket seeds which I have re-sown following their abject failure to grow in the first attempt. A chance encounter with the Beechgrove gardener George Anderson made me feel better about this when he revealed that the indifferent summer weather had made gardening, a tricky business for even the most experienced of gardeners and that in his words "we all have failures Richard". Lovely fella that George.

The onions are still looking good and should be ready in a couple of weeks, but despite the rain that has fallen this week and indeed was falling in large quantities on me and Brian throughout the whole item on the show, the advice is to keep watering them in order for them to swell in size. The radishes are coming along nicely too and most remarkable of all is the news that the rhubarb is making a comeback! Last time Brian was in my garden he found some roots of the failed fruit and replanted it in another part of the garden. Two weeks later and evident for all to see are the green shoots of recovery, a term often applied to matters of a financial nature that prove to be nothing more than political rhubarb, is, in this instance highly appropriate for the rhubarb! In fact it's the gardening equivalent of Stuart Broad's renaissance as an England cricketer, a brilliant performance all round.


And on that note it only remains for me to once again apologise for the lack of photographic evidence of my gardening exploits, which I may remind you is due to the fact that my wife took the camera and the kids away on holiday. She'll be back next week and so will I with another blog, until then happy gardening!


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