Saturday, June 5, 2010

On the Fruit Farm

This is the time of year that this blog should be titled Smoky Mountain Gardens, although I'd had a good bit of fiber stuff going on.  But even my fiber is influenced by the plant world.  This is a roving I call delphiniums (Delphinia?) and was one of my Phat Fiber contributions.

Several years ago I had a friend who turned his suburban yard into something of an orchard, with fruit trees, grapes, strawberries and several other fruits.  I always admired his variation on the backyard vegie garden.  A few years ago I started on the same path.  My boyfriend like to dig holes and not only supported this idea but went a wee bit crazy with it.  It started innocently enough with a couple of elderberry bushes for a very practical reason:  they grow under black walnuts and they screen the neighbor's rather unsightly yard.  That set of neighbors have moved on, but the elderberries have filled in nicely and seem to like to spread.   Currently in bloom, look for elderberry cobblers and pies later this summer.

Do you like raspberries? I do.  So a couple of years ago the BF dug a trench and planted about a dozen red raspberry canes.  They are quite happy, even inside their 'cage.'  Last year we had a good crop - we even made 2 batches of preserves.  Yum!   

For a city lot, my yard a fairly big.  A house between my other (the Good Neighbor) neighbor burned down many years ago.  The then-owner of #95 bought the lot and for many years it was the 'hang out' yard for all the neighborhood kids.  A sloping lot, there is a ledge about 1/2 way down.  It is now the Blueberry bed.  About 6 plants with different varieties to stretch the season.  Because it is only their 2nd year, there was a good bit of domestic discord over whether the blossoms should be sacrificed to put energy into roots and leaves and branches.  In the end I persevered to allow a couple to bear fruit.  Science, after all.  And it is a banner year for blueberries in these parts, so I decided to tent the berries so the birds (and kids!) wouldn't get them all!  A couple have ripened and I gotta say, very tasty!

The newest kid on the lot is Miss Figgy - a brown turkey fig that we planted last fall, so this is her first summer. We hope to get a fall crop of figs.  So as not to bore you, my good readers, I'll just say that we also have grapes, rhubarb and a rogue stand of blackberries.   

I've been called a little fruity a time or two.  and I'm all for it!

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