Thursday, August 14, 2008

We Have An Orchard At Last.

At last the duck run is now being called "Our Orchard" with the planting of 2 fruit trees in the area.

Planted out now are 1 nectarine tree, 2 plum varieties and a double grafted apple tree. We didn't get the dwarf "red delicious"planted out today. This one will be tomorrow. Along with a few other items that missed out today.

We didn't have rain, but the sky was threatening a couple of times.

Lots of other news to tell you, I'll start with the new fruit trees.

Both trees planted out. Gala/Fuji double graft in the background and the plum tree in the foreground. As the trees are planted in the duck run, the trees need to be protected from hungry bills. Not sure how long the wire will be around the trees, guess until they are big enough to cope with the ducks.

Having a double grafted apple tree will be a bonus as they are suited to pollinate each other. Also they match the dwarf Red Delicious tree, that will be planted out in the lawn area.

Nectarine tree is budding with blossom flowers. After the blossoms have finished, they will be removed as it's the tree's first year in our yard.

Our trees will not be left to grow and overwhelm the area. I plan on keeping them compact and at a manageable height. Not as tall and wide as the 2 fruit trees that were here, when we bought the house.

Still want to hopefully buy an orange mandarin tree this year. Next winter, we are aiming for another apricot tree and a pear tree. Then the orchard should be complete.

Other news.

Today is a good day to plant out my seed potatoes in line with the moon phase. I have Nicola and Desiree for this season.

Four rows of spuds, 2 rows of each variety sown. I planted mine this year directly in the soil as I am hoping this will increase my harvest. Past years I have always grown them under straw, but not with good results.

I am thinking SA is too hot to grow them above the soil. Hoping the soil will keep the roots cooler and the plants damper, increasing the crop size.

One of the what must have been 10's of hundreds of worms in the spud area. Good fibrous soil, not a lot of clay chunks and easy to make trenches for the spuds. I dug the soil to a depth of 10 to 15 cm and once I clean out the duck shed in the next few days, this will be spread over the area, to suppress weeds and feed the plants.

I have a reputation for killing rhubarb plants. Average 1 plant, sometimes 2 a year and they never make it to their first birthday. very sad and each time I kill a plant, I think...... nope not buying another one next year.

When the winter months come round....I buy another crown and start all over again. This is #9 and that's what I'll call it. Nine years gardening in my little vegie patch and 9 years of killing this most wonderful plant.

Wonder if the crowns cringe when I walk past them in the shops. eek Yeehah, even sent me a couple of crowns from her own personal stock.....they died too.

This year I have looked into how to care better for the victim, I mean crown. Pat will make me a shade house to protect it on the hot summer days.

This is where #9 is living. You can just see the poor bugger in the centre of the cement rings. More recycling from my neighbour's clean up. Knew the ring would come in handy one day. This way I know where #9 is at all times and I can keep it mulched over the summer months.

So we'll see if #9 makes it to August 2009.

Close up of #9. First leaf is almost ready to burst. This morning when I had a boo-peep, the skin was still sealed and no green leaf could be seen.

Keep your fingers crossed that #9 isn't replaced with #10.

Very happy to see my carrots from my very first carrot seed saving effort have germinated. The variety is "All Seasons".

Best part about this germination is there was enough rain and showers, for me not to water it, once the seeds had been sown. Three rows and as time goes by I'll thin them, as I sowed them thickly.

That is about all my news for today. Tomorrow I have a small list of items that need to be completed.

Until next time....hoo roo

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The Duck Herder said...

Hi Lucky 1 - it is definitely the time of year to be getting excited about new fruit trees! I think you ducks will be most pleased with the shade when they get a little bigger. Do you know what type of nectarine it is?

In terms of rhubarb hints, they do like some shade - more than you would think - and they do like a fairly moist soil with lots of rich, fully composted manure or, well, compost!

fingers crossed for your next little victim!

I know what it is like to be a serial killer - I am no friend to the carrot - that is for sure!


Lucy C said...

I think no. 9 needs posts all of its own.
Perhaps regular updates and a tag so we can follow its progress.