Apr 25 2011

The day of the (dead) triffids

It’s a boy thing, isn’t it? This playing with big machines.

They’re out there now – my new partner and his 16 year old son. In the tractor and happy as pigs in shit.

Last time we were here at the farm, back in February, we poisoned a whole lot of weeds.

Now these are no ordinary weeds. They grow into trees, and keep putting out shoots which also grow into trees and put out more shoots.

I still don’t know what they are, but I call them triffids.

They had grown to the extent that they were threatening to take over the yard. On one side they’d spread from the fence almost to the house. On the other side they’d gone out into the next paddock.

They were slowly surrounding us, cutting off sunshine and views.

So, as I said, last time we were here we poisoned them.  Or more to the point, Damien did. Damien’s my partner, and I really can’t think of something else to call him here, so let’s stick with Damien. It’s easier and I should remember it, being his name and all.

Not only did he poison them, but he borrowed the farmer’s poison truck to do it.

That was exciting! Using real farm machinery!! All by himself!!!

As I said – it’s a boy thing.

Well, he went around and poisoned all the triffids. Then he poisoned a few other weeds. Then he went down one side of the track from the house and back up the other and poisoned the scrub threatening to take over there.

Then it rained.

He was devastated. Not because he’d done all that work that might be wasted. But that he’d wasted the use of the farm poison truck.

He might never get it again, and he might have nothing to show for it.

So we’ve spend a tense couple of months worrying if the poison took, or if it all got washed away by the rain.

So this weekend we got back to the farm again.

Imagine the tension as we came up the rise and the house slowly came into view.

Oh no. Greenery at the back of the house. The triffids are still there!

But then we came over the rise and there it was in full view. And most of the triffids were dead.

The very large ones still have leaves on them, but they’re slowly dying as well. We’ll give them another dose of roundup before we leave so next time they should be completely gone.

But dead triffids means a lot of physical work chopping, digging and pulling them out. Then piling them in the trailer to take them over to the bonfire that we’re building up for the June long weekend.

Until …..

The farm manager came out to say hello. And offered the use of the tractor to push all the triffids over and out.

A tractor! A real tractor!! That’s even better than a poison truck!!!

They’ll start sauntering soon. And we’ll have to buy real akubras. Just like real farmers!

I’m not used to this. I’m a city girl and my son doesn’t play with big machines. He does other boy stuff, like going to the rugby with me.

Maybe I should just go in and have a shower and make myself pretty for when they’ve finished their man’s work.

Or maybe I’ll pour another glass of wine and sit in the sun and watch them. Sounds like a much better idea to me!

Permanent link to this article: http://kathswinbourne.com.au/the-day-of-the-dead-triffids/