Kale flowers viewed through the polythene of the greenhouse wall. The plants are a big disappointment as they were supposed to grow tall like Brussels sprouts and have many kale-like sprouts up the stems. Instead they have produced masses of flowers where the sprouts should be. No doubt this is why they are called Flower Sprouts®.

A more major disappointment arises from the hard frost we had 8 days ago. My efforts did not save the little apricot tree yet again. It has lost nearly all of its leaves, along with the fruit that had set. This happens every spring. After a dozen or so years the tree has yet to produce fruit. I can see only dead fruit on the big apricot tree, but the one under the firs has fruit still. Of the four plum trees one has lost many leaves and possibly all its fruit. One sheltered tree has a few tiny plums surviving, but I can’t see any on the others.

The vegetables in the open garden fared worse than I first thought. The pak choi leaves have turned unnaturally pale and the lettuces have brown patches. However they are all still growing and I’m hoping to get something from them. Not so with the asparagus. The day before the frost I counted nine spears just breaking ground. I have never had that many at one time before and was looking forward to them with relish. But they were stopped in their tracks and have browned off. Only one spear has come up since then.

Meanwhile it’s spring and the grass grows and grows and grows…

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