Fruit Bowl

28 Jan 1 Comment Tamara Garden

Apples, nectarines, persimmons, figs, quince…I do love fruit and we are on our way to having a Reverie mixed fruit bowl in our orchard. Back in the fall I pre-ordered eight fruit trees that would arrive in January, prime time for bare-root fruit tree planting. But eight fruit trees that need to be planted means eight holes that need to be dug, and the ground in the orchard is rocky dense clay.

I knew I wasn’t in the mood to dig eight holes in the ground and I didn’t want Ramon to do it and hurt his back. So I paid two college kids $15 an hour to dig the holes. I really need to remember that the 18-year old male brain generally hasn’t developed all of its critical thinking skills yet – I made the mistake of not checking on them until toward the end of their four hours of digging. One of them, Joel, had managed to dig out a rock the size of a small child. I really have no idea how he managed it. I had marked on the ground where I wanted the holes dug, and he took it literally, not deviating from the X-that-marked-the-spot even if it meant having to get that big-ass rock out. If it were me, when I hit rock I would have just moved over a foot or so and started digging there. But they were great kids and worked really hard, and now we have an expensive decorative rock in the orchard that’s too heavy for either of us to move anywhere else.



It rained pretty much nonstop since they dug those holes at the end of December, so I didn’t have a chance to plant the trees for nearly the whole month of January and it was starting to get late for planting. Not that I can complain about the rain (aren’t we all saying that refrain every time we complain about the rain?) but it was definitely causing problems with my tree planting timeline. Fortunately last week we had four rainless days in a row, which allowed the soil to dry out at least a tiny bit, and allowed Ramon and I to get the trees planted over a two-day period, with the last two trees going in the ground just as it started to rain again. I made the mistake of pruning the first few, though, so I hope they don’t catch any water-borne diseases with the torrential rain that came down right after we got them in the ground. I should have waited to prune until we had another 4 or 5 day dry spell, but I didn’t think about it until I had already pruned the first two trees. I’ve been trying to be really careful about timing my pruning for when it’s dry since we lost one of our apple trees to fire blight last year.



If all goes well, within a few years we will have two new kinds of apples (Sierra Beauty and Braeburn), Mission figs, Fuyu persimmons, nectarines, quince, another peach (O’Henry) and apricots. These added to the trees we already have (apple, plum, peach, pear, Hachiya persimmon, and mulberry). And lots of rocks. Big ones.

Yum! Can’t wait!