Wednesday, 12 December 2007

The Orchard Progresses

I finally managed to have a complete day at home. Over the past couple of weeks I seem to have spent at least half of each day running round to get replacement parts for yet something else that has broken.

Yesterday it was fuel for the car, I tried to fill up with fuel while shopping on Monday but when I tried to open up the flap over the filler cap it remained tightly locked. I must have spent 10 minutes locking and unlocking the car in the hope it would shift. In the end it was a trip to the garage where they dismantled the wheel arch and manually opened the lock.

Today wasn’t problem free though. Yesterday, my telephone line went down again. This was fixed by the evening but there was still a bit of noise on the line. This morning it died again and took the Internet connection with it. Trying to report the fault is a nightmare. Everything is automated so not only do you have to navigate one of the ‘press 1 for this, press 2 for that’ menus but when you get to the right place you don’t get a person but a voice recognition system that only understands a limited number of faults. My friend Ann then called France Telecom for me but initially they refused to talk to her, as she was not calling from a France Telecom line. She switched her line to another provider a while back; there has been some deregulation here as in the UK but the old state monopolies are throwing all of their toys out of their prams and refusing to acknowledge any one who leaves them – there have even been reports of people being told that it they leave, they will never be allowed to move back!

Anyway she did finally get through and my line was restored early afternoon. However my Internet connection did not return. That took me 20 minutes calling their premium rate line while they fixed the fault on their line for a service that I already pay for. Humph! Still I am back up and running again but it did waste quite a bit of time today having to check whether anything was being done.

I was hoping to burn some of the leaves and trimmed branches from the ornamental mulberries in the front but after the 25 mm of rain we had the other day they steadfastly refused to burn so I settled on tree planting. Thankfully the soil drains reasonably quickly and today my shoes stayed on my feet rather than being pulled off by the weight of clay soil adhering to them after just a couple of steps. Even so it’s hard work and I was getting one tree planted every half to three-quarters of an hour. I now have only four to plant so if the weather holds they should go in tomorrow.

The orchard will contain, 2 walnuts, one a graft which should fruit relatively quickly but not live terribly long and one non-graft which should be around for posterity, 2 different types of hazelnut, 2 olive trees, 2 nectarines, a peach, a fig, 3 different types of apple, a Mirabelle, a quince, 2 almonds, a pear and a persimmon. I already have some sweet cherries, some sour cherries, a general plum and a greengage that were here already and are dotted round the garden.

1 comment:

Jamie said...

Wow! It sounds wonderful where you are! But im sure that it is hard work when you are somewhere strange and everything is done on a go slow:)

The orchard sounds fab! i have one lonely apple tree in my back garden which i planted 18 months ago! It is steadily growing though! I had one apple off it this year!