Having two gardeners is not necessarily a good thing. Although No. 2, Paul, knows that he is employed to take the weight off No.1 Gardener’s shoulders, No.1 has no official idea. He came last week for his usual day and noticed that various jobs had been done. When he said, all innocently: "somebody has cleared the overhang on the path to the lane and filled a compost bin”, I agreed with a throwaway remark, implying that I had done it myself. “Yes, we had some good days for work last week.”
“Yeeeees,” he said. Feeling uncomfortable I asked No. 1 to tackle the same path and dig out grass and weeds from between the stones. He made an excellent job of it. “Right,” he said, “ now it looks like somebody lives here.”
Apart from a permanent guilt feeling, having two gardeners, albeit temporarily, also means that I have to work twice as hard myself. Not for me the detached supervisory role; it’s “would you please . . . . “ and “if you don’t mind, could you help me with . . . . . .” round here. I come from a family who did for themselves, so when either gardener works, so do I. The same hours, although maybe not quite as hard, leaving me exhausted twice as often. I have a small garden, no more than 1/3 of an acre, there won’t be enough work for three of us soon. However, in winter most outdoor work stops and No. 1 won’t want to come anyway.
Markham, in the English Husbandman of 1635 says:
Now for quinces, they are a fruit which by no means you may place near any other kind of fruit, because their scent is so strong and piercing, that it will enter into any fruit and clean take away his natural relish. The time of their gathering is ever in October; and the meetest place to lie them in is where they may have most air and lie dry (for wet they can by no means endure); also they must not lie close, because the smell of them is both strong and unwholesome.”
Strong? yes. Unwholesome? No.