Sunday, 4 September 2011

Once You Lop You Just Can't Stop

Once again I found myself scrambling up some steep ladders to do some lopping this week. This time it was a conifer. Under the instigation of Parsley I went scrambling up, armed with a natty new bow-saw, a pair of Fiskars loppers and a mini tree saw. Not all at once mind! I'm no octopus.

Overcoming my initial fear of heights I went up for the first cut. It was damn difficult as I was getting scratched to high heaven by all the surrounding twigs and branches. Prickly little fuckers! But once I'd got some of them out the way the cutting proper was swift and merciless. The first cut is the deepest as the saying goes. Took me two journeys to chop down the first part of the main trunk. Barely had time to alert Parsley as a huge branch replete with slapping leaves came hurtling down towards her; not so much as a TIIIM BURTON! Had a second go at it after that, cutting off another 2 feet approx.

The other branches were much easier, although by now I was getting cocky and there were flying branches knocking off stone bird baths and ivy. 'Push it towards the dome!' or 'Not towards the arrch!' screamed Parsley. Well she didn't scream but she could've done.

Once the main body had been cut (we surveyed from upstairs to get the lowdown), I went up again to trim off the rogue bits and dismantle a pigeons nest. Don't worry no chicks this time of year. Then Parsley did the nice cosmetic part, tidying it up so it didn't look like topiary gone hideously wrong. Ten bags of cuttings and a couple of trunks later we sat down to sup Polish lager and a bottle of wine that could rip the varnish off floorboards. Cheers Bargain (B)ooze. Cheers.

Crazy Paving!

Here I am on a blazer of a Sunday afternoon, incongruously swathed in thermal underwear. It's been a fair while since I blogged and as ever there have been some great antics going on. If by antics you include bomb sized marrows with their very own handles, leveling shrapnel infested soil or eating chicken chowder and talking about prostate checks under the safety of a September solardome then, yes winks there have been antics.

The subject of this blog relates to an antic known as POWER WASHING HEXAGONAL PAVING SLABS. Pulling out and rigging up the Wolf Blaster Max (see link below incase you've forgotten) was a job in its own right. This lovely little piece of equipment can literally tear the skin off your body.

So caution had to be taken. We're talking the full Craig David here - big earphones, goggs and gloves. Transporting each of the slabs over to the other side of the garden (Parsley never likes things to be easy, even when they're perfect there will be another task, like shifting the house a couple of degrees west so it gets more sunlight etc), I slammed them on a giant tarpaulin bag. On with the Wolf to clean off the impacted dirt and scuz. For the most part it worked a big cakey dream. In my own way I felt like one of those restorers who cleans years of soot etc off the roof of the Sistine Chapel. In another mode I felt very happy to be holding a power tool feeling like I could advertise it on TV. Only people with hair like mine appear as extras in Game of Thrones, not a power tool in sight for this warlock!

Witticisms included: 'Diet Irn Bru break,' (Parsley) 'Diet Panda Coke Break,' (Parsley) and 'It categorically cannot be Panda Coke. Because whenever you say Coke it belongs to Coca Cola. It's Panda Cola!' (Cakeatonne). 'Awfully rich.' (Parsley and Oregano in response to Cakeatonne's snobbery). 'Girls Aloyd' (All three of us!)

We're about half way through cleaning them. They will look awesome in the solardome. Watch this space. Space rhymes with what? PACE. (Peace).