It’s great having dry weekends for allotment clearing, but I think we’ve reached the hard and slow part now. It’s also the muscle tiring part; we ache!
The right-angled fork and azada (a right-angled spade) got a good work out today, as we started the painstaking job of removing the creeping buttercup root by root. Tim has really mastered effective use of the fork, swinging it effortlessly up so that as the fork head plummets to the ground its own weight is sufficient to embed it deeply in the earth. Then, just pulling back on it to get it out again – the bit I find very tiring when the soil is wet and heavy. I prefer the azada, which works on a similar principle, but is easier to remove once it’s in the ground!
Progress was slow today though, as after we’d broken up a patch of earth, we’d go back through it, pulling out as many buttercup roots as we could. I really hope this will pay off come the spring when we want to plant things.