Down on the Allotment

Matron grows vegetables and fruit in a courtyard garden. Which edibles will tolerate less than ideal growing conditions. Discovering how veggies can grow in partial shade.

Sunday, May 08, 2011

Wiggling Things!

Many people in the UK will already know what this post is about from the first picture! In case you don't there is a wonderful company here in the UK that will post you live composting worms! Wiggly Wigglers is just that. After a long and very cold Winter here in the UK my kitchen compost bin is practically void of worms. I think they emigrated to somewhere warmer. There are usually hundreds in there.

The postmark on the package gives you a clue what's inside the parcel when the postman delivers it.

Nicely packed in a bag containing some dry compost.

One pound of worms! A mixture of different types of composting worms ready to munch their way through my kitchen waste and turn it into rich garden compost.


But composting worms weren't the only wriggling thing I found in the garden this morning.


I went to pick this one up from the patio when one end of it appeared stuck to the ground...




A leech !!!! I have no idea where this came from, we don't have a pond and neither do any of the neighbours. I hope there aren't any more.. I am reminded of a scene from 'The African Queen' where poor Humphrey Bogart was covered in the nasty little critters. Does anyone know if this is a native inhabitant of a suburban London garden?

18 Comments:

At 10:35 PM, Blogger Robert said...

Is your garden damp? It's probably a horseleech, which I used to find all the time under logs and the like on the watermeadows round Oxford. They don't go far from water though.

 
At 10:40 PM, Blogger Peggy said...

Ughh! not something I would like to find in my garden either!I like the story of the Royalty french bean.. from Heligan to Hillingdon!I have seeds of the Queensland Blue pumpkinn which you very kindly gave me on your visit to Ireland and after reading a previous post I will put them in ASAP!

 
At 1:53 AM, Blogger ~Holly~ said...

Yeah for worms!! Yikes! A leech??

 
At 3:38 AM, Blogger Wyatt said...

Ugh! I'm sure it's not that horrible, just gross...

Wyatt

 
At 6:54 AM, Blogger Matron said...

Robert - we've just had the first decent rain in months, perhaps that brought Mr leech out from under his log. Yes, probably quite a damp garden.

 
At 6:55 AM, Blogger Matron said...

Peggy - I must return to see more of Ireland one day!

 
At 7:18 AM, OpenID wartimegardening said...

You must let us know how you get on with those lovely worms but as for the leach....l think l would release it somewhere a long way from your garden. The only thing l keep finding in my garden are leather-jackets and snails!

 
At 7:37 AM, Blogger Paul and Melanie said...

Eeeek... I'vve never seen a leech in our garden, and we have a pond... How odd, perhaps a bird dropped it?

 
At 9:18 AM, Blogger Magic Cochin said...

I love the 2nd photo - is that an instruction for the postman to stay calm?

The slight shower has brought out lots of things... like ticks! I had to remove one from the tabby one's back yesterday, so check your dogs after a walk and your cats too.

Oh and take care yourself!

Celia

 
At 9:52 AM, Blogger Nome said...

Eww! I've never seen a leech that size, and certainly not out of the pond! But I just did a quick search and found this page http://www.bumblebee.org/invertebrates/ANNELIDAb.htm which says some species do indeed leave the water, and can reach up to 20cm!!

 
At 10:15 AM, Blogger melsanford said...

I wonder how your postman felt about delivering worms :-) A leech tho - uck! No thanks. I'll take the worms anyday! Mel xx

 
At 11:08 AM, Blogger LindaG said...

Eww.

On the other hand, I do so want to get into worm composting!

 
At 11:55 AM, Blogger Green Lane Allotments said...

Leeches out of water is nowhere safe!

We had delivery of some live mealworm from Wiggly Wrigglers - for the birds as apparently they're good for rearing young. We were thinking of the blue tits in our nest box cam but the chicks are too tiny for mealworms just yet - however the blackbirds can't get enough of them!

 
At 12:01 PM, Blogger Anna said...

I had serious doubts that any of my worms would survive the winter when frost got into their home but they amazed me with their resilience. Numbers down though I think. Good look with the new crowd :)

 
At 3:45 PM, Blogger Jelliebabe said...

Eeeeeeew! Leechtastic Matron! <<>>

 
At 7:42 PM, Blogger Midmarsh John said...

I was surprised how well the worms in my wormery survived last winter. Especially as I forgot to wrap it as I had done previous years. I can see you have a good batch of tiger worms there.

 
At 10:23 PM, Blogger andyg said...

... are you sure it isn't a NZ flatworm? I hope it isn't as they will really love the new composting worms!!!

 
At 9:22 AM, Blogger Martin and Amy said...

Wow!

2 things to say. I found a leech the other day too in our garden it was stuck to my arm after I'd been potting some bits up, blooming thing wouldn't come off!!

The potatoes look great too, we are growing them in old compost bags this year. Really hoping for a good crop now I've seen your pictures from inside a pot! :)

Martin

www.our-good-life.blogspot.com

 

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