Orchard update

Spring has sprung! This is our first spring on the farm and we have been working hard to get everything set up so we can enjoy some harvests in the next 3-7 years. The sooner we get things in the ground the fewer years we will have to wait to hit full production. In the meantime, we will be enjoying fruits this year from our Gravenstein apple, Bartlett pear, and Italian Purne plum. All three got a pretty intense pruning this spring and we hope they appreciated it! There are a few faster-producing bushes and canes we are hoping to see production beginning on this year too. Namely, the blackberries, blueberries, raspberries, figs, and mulberries. Production should only ramp up on those over the next few years. Especially with the help of our secret weapon, llama poop! Those beans are black gold. They don’t need to be aged and make an awesome “tea” for the plants. All the trees and bushes got their first dose this spring, except for the blackberries, they don’t need ANY encouragement!

Mama needs a truck! There were seven 7’+ trees and six 3′ vines in that compact SUV.

Trees we will be waiting on will be our hazelnuts (Jefferson and Theta), pears (Clapp’s Favorite and Flemish Beauty), and fuzzy kiwi vines (Hayward and Saanichton 12). It could be several years before some of these varieties fruit but there is no time like the present to start!

This isn’t quite orchard related, but tomatoes are a fruit so we’ll let it slide. Yesterday we reused some old PVC that was left here in the bushes and crafted a tomato cage with 100% reused materials. Homeschool took place in the form of measuring, counting, planning, and celebrating our earth and society by using what we had. The string will go in later when the tomatoes go in. We opted for a 5′ structure since our indeterminate heirloom tomatoes will be too hefty for those tiny little cages. Is it just me or can you all hear the Arrogant Worm lyric “uncage your tomatoes” from “Carrot Juice is Murder” when you think about tomato cages? We don’t mind laughing at ourselves. LOL.

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