Sloe, sloe, dig, dig, sloe

A hedge-in-the-making: one of 20 blackthorn shrubs that now grace our back field

A hedge-in-the-making: one of 20 blackthorn shrubs that now grace our back field

The Boss has an aching back – but he’s convinced it will have been worth it: he’s just planted 20 blackthorn bushes in the back field of our finca in rural Mallorca. One day they’ll grow up to become a long hedge and bear a multitude of sloes (see how hopeful I am?) with which he’ll make sloe gin. The fact that we can look forward to our own crop of sloes is down to our fantastic friends from Oxfordshire, who kindly brought the young shrubs over to Mallorca in their cabin baggage! https://livinginruralmallorca.com/2013/02/15/sloe-road-to-mallorca/

Planting anything on our land calls for more than a spade and fork, because what looks like normal land is mainly rocks with a covering of soil. Rarely can we plant something where we’d ideally like it to be, because a few test probes with a fork usually reveal that there’s not enough earth, or a mammoth rock is lurking beneath. Where would we be without a pickaxe?

Dynamite might do it

A Mallorcan wine-maker who lives nearby once told us how, as a child, he remembered dynamite being used to blast away rocks in one of the family’s fields so that an orchard could be planted. It’s a large field, so we can only imagine how noisy that must have been!

Whilst dynamite would be a quick solution – and less back-breaking – it would surely frighten the sheep in the field across the lane . . . and probably sound the death knell for what’s left of the ruined neighbouring casita. And think of the dust!

So our fledgling hedge was planted with muscle power. And don’t those muscles know it . . .

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4 thoughts on “Sloe, sloe, dig, dig, sloe

  1. Since I must contend with rocks and clay in my garden, I can appreciate the tremendous amount of work that must have gone into planting 20 shrubs. How exciting that you’ll be able to make your own sloe gin. Will you infuse regular dry gin, or will you make pacharán ?

    • The Boss infuses regular dry gin – this time probably using gin from Menorca. We do like pacharan though! A few days on, I’m pleased to report that the little shrubs are doing very well, with only two that still look like bare twigs . . .

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