Sunday, May 18, 2014

Weekend Work: We Have Apple Trees!

I went to the local garden center to pick up two bags of potting mix on Saturday. That was all I needed. But then, beckoning to me from the row behind the potting soil, was a sign that read "Fruit Trees On Sale." I poked around, saw some stuff I liked, and then went to the cash register. And when I got there, I turned around and went back to the trees. They were a pretty good deal, and they had some interesting varieties. I called my husband (who was out of town), didn't get him, and left a message. I checked out with my two bags of potting soil and left the garden center.

After driving two blocks, he texted me. He said we should definitely buy two apple trees for the front yard. So I turned around, grabbed two trees, and managed to fit them in my car. I was highly motivated (and had to take the back roads home so I wouldn't damage the trees).

This isn't a great picture, but nothing was going to keep me from getting those trees home.

I ended up with a Snow Sweet and Honeycrisp. They're both planted in the front yard, which happens to meet our HOA requirement of having two trees in front. No one said they couldn't produce a crop! I've never grown apples, and haven't really done much research about them ... so if you have any advice, feel free to share in the comments!

Prior to going to the garden center, I accomplished another gardening task—I put together the large greenhouse my father in law gave us. We only had two small 3-shelf greenhouses, and I figured this would give us all the space we need. Well, it's already full! If I don't start seedlings for friends in future years, I think it will meet our needs.

I took some photos of the garden on Friday after work. Even though the majority of the garden isn't planted yet, there's still a lot going on!

The garlic is looking great! All but one clove came up this spring, and one shot up two stalks, so I got exactly what I planted (the extra stalk will be harvested as spring garlic so it can have sufficient space to form a head).

My mammoth peas are finally doing something! The second round that was seeded a few weeks after this one isn't far behind.

What a beautiful strawberry blossom! Unfortunately, I had to pluck it. We're not letting the strawberries form fruit this year, so all their energy will go into developing strong plants that will hopefully last for years (and produce even more berries next year).

Asparagus is "look but don't touch" this year. Thankfully, every crown has produced shoots, and some of them are a few feet tall already. We planted two-year crowns, so next year we can harvest them for a few weeks.

Other tasks: I pulled a few weeds, planted fava beans, transplanted celery for friends, made my first seedling sale to a friend, and Aaron planted two landscaping bushes in the front of the house (unfortunately, they will not produce a harvest). There was a harvest from the garden, but I'll save that for Harvest Monday.


  1. Are they full size apple trees or dwarfs? I guess if they are landscaping ones for the front yard they would be full sized. I planted dwarfs in my yard because they are easier to take care of but I'm regretting it a bit. The taller trees look so much nicer.

    1. They're full size apple trees. I had been considering dwarf for maintenance purposes, but these were there, on into my car they went.

      One is planted in front of our porch, which faces straight west. In a few years, it will provide some very welcome shade for afternoons & evenings out there. That is, if we stick around. We're not good at staying in one place for very long.