Thursday 21 July 2022

I surrender: Mother Nature Wins


Visited our village in Spain for a short break recently. We did not take the motor caravan because the ferry to Sant Ander now costs over £1000 - another inflation-based decision. We flew by Ryanair and took buses plus a lift on the final leg from friends who live in La Fresneda.

This meant that I had to walk down to our huerto (large terraced garden and orchard): a distance of about 2 or 3 Km. The irrigation ditch had blocked and surged like a waterfall when I unblocked it which was a bit scary, but all well in the end and the casita that I built in the past seemed OK. However, the terraces below were completely overgrown and some of the fruit trees had died. The brambles are back with a vengeance and the main terrace is bursting with canes.

I did a bit of strimming then gave up. It is hopeless. The idea of having a garden in Spain was sort of romantic, but it’s not at all practical. The soil is rich and the weeds grow splendidly. Constant attention during the growing season is pretty much essential.

So, I will try to relax into the visitor that I actually am. I will try to stoically observe nature taking its course as it invades the three terraces that I gradually transformed into orchards and gardens. The automatic irrigation scheme that I devised over the years will block and dry up. The brambles will choke my fruit trees from below and the irrepressible fig trees will engulf them in impenetrable shade from above and the 70 olive trees down by the river will have a wild time. Hey-ho, life goes on and the experience did result in a book: Rolling Stones in Spain.