Planting a small orchard.

On purchasing fruit trees.
Don't be put off by ugly "end of season sale" trees at some of these home and garden stores. Some good deals can be made, and if the tree has been exposed but balled in the lot for several months and it's still alive it shows strength of character and resilience.....lol. Your choices may be limited but fruit of any kind in hand is better than no fruit at all. Keep in mind that the average amount of time before they start to produce is seven years. You can help correct a lot of abuse that has been given a sapling when they were pulled from the nursery in seven years. Who knows, the tree might like you and start producing in five.

Yeah fellas, I retired about two years ago and now have the opportunity to pick up a small tractor. I've got about five acres of old tobacco/corn ground next to the house that has been dormant for at least twenty five years. I sprouted two dozen chestnut trees from nuts off of five parent trees I have in the immediate yard. I see an orchard in the development.

Chestnuts are interesting. You can eat them raw, cooked like little potatoes, dried and ground for meal, and the best is you can even convert them to protein on the hoof! Looking forward to fattening up old Velvet ears when the nuts start dropping.
 
Potatoes has been hilled and are starting to bloom; rutabagas are growing and will need thinning; about 10 corn plants grew from pack of 40 or so seeds;onions look fine, and most importantly, the fruit trees seem to be doing well.
 

Attachments

  • July garden.jpg
    July garden.jpg
    343.9 KB · Views: 239
Here we are, a week later. The pernicious purslane plants have been weeded out of the onion rows, the turnip/rutabaga row has been thinned, potato plants are flowering and the fruit trees are staying green.
Two and a half hours in the sun on my knees this morning; finally rain in the forecast for tomorrow - have not cut the lawn in over a month, it is that dry.
orchard 19 July.jpg
 
I still enjoy gardening, although I don't plant near as much as I use to... I can and freeze for the winter months, so I like to grow enough for that too.

Here's my front garden,

standard.jpg


and this is my back garden,

standard.jpg


These are older picts., the gardens are much further along now...

SR
 
We just moved into a smaller house and one of it's features is an apple tree in the back yard.
It's even got apples growing on it (and falling off, too.)
Thing is, it's a great tangled rats' nest of far too many branches all close together and too tall, besides.
It needs serious pruning but I've no idea what to cut, what to leave and when to do the job.
Can anyone tell me the best way to go about the job?
 
My tiny back yard, I live in a townhouse, was full of trashy fill dirt. I've amended it for five years and good little to nothing to grow. So I installed some raised beds and bought some good dirt. My asparagus is on it second yeR now and next spring I will have plenty. Beans grow well as do tomatoes and cucumbers. I have passion vines growing up to the kitchen patio above and after me and the best pollinating them, hopefully get passion fruit this year.
I dont have much luck and container gardening but I do have some cayenne and Trinadad Scorpions growing.
20180810_142100.jpg
20180810_142104.jpg
20180810_141357.jpg
20180810_141406.jpg
20180807_161031.jpg
 
gardens1.jpg

gardens1.jpg

Raised bed did well, I'll expand the concept next year. Tomato plants doing well, as are the bell peppers and the carrots. String beans, radishes and peas not so much, but the seeds were several years old so I'm not surprised.

gardens2.jpg

gardens2.jpg

gardens3.jpg

gardens4.jpg

gardens4.jpg


I had more tomato sets than I had room in the raised bed, so I stuck some in spare corners of the flower gardens. They're doing well too. Have actually eaten some cherry tomatoes, Bigger Boy is looking good if I can get them ripe without frost or critters getting them first.
gardens3.jpg

gardens3.jpg

gardens5.jpg


gardens5.jpg


Flower gardens are doing well too. Tulips were stupendous this year, I put bird netting over them to keep the goddamdeer out of them. After they went by, I overplanted the beds with Nasturtiums so I'd have color for the rest of the season.

The Rudbeckia (Black-eyed Susans) have come in heavy and will provide color until fall. You can just see the Clematis behind it which was really late this year but filled in well. It's on the downward slope now. Day lilies and Oriental lilies were a bit weak this year due, I think, to dry conditions early. You can see by my scruffy lawn that it's been dryer than a popcorn fart.
 
Last edited:
I sprouted two dozen chestnut trees from nuts off of five parent trees I have in the immediate yard. I see an orchard in the development.

Chestnuts are interesting. You can eat them raw, cooked like little potatoes, dried and ground for meal, and the best is you can even convert them to protein on the hoof! Looking forward to fattening up old Velvet ears when the nuts start dropping.
Are they Chinese chesnuts or one of those resistant strains they're trying to develop?
 
The species varieties are perennials but what is usually found are varieties that are annuals; the seed looks different. They'll probably reseed themselves but it means if you wanted rid of them forever just cut the stalks in the spring.
 
I read something about a supposed Indian way of gardening, Plant some corn and beans and squash together in a big hill. When it all comes up, the beans provide nitrogen to the soil and climb the corn so there's no support to make, and the squash provides ground shade so there's no weeding.
 
I read something about a supposed Indian way of gardening, Plant some corn and beans and squash together in a big hill. When it all comes up, the beans provide nitrogen to the soil and climb the corn so there's no support to make, and the squash provides ground shade so there's no weeding.

I've heard that called three sisters planting... I have had success in well lit gardens with that. Unfortunately, my current back yard only gets about 4-5 hours of direct sun a day. Tomatoes do okay, corn, not so much. I have had good luck with zucchini in the past and beans this year. I may try another variety of corn next year and give this a here.
 
Back
Top