Formally Informal English Garden Update
by Warren Bonesteel
(Duncan, OK (US))
This is an update from the entry last year.
The granny smith apple bloomed for the first time this spring. A late frost, followed by a nasty wind storm, put paid to any fruit. The Elberta
peach bloomed and ten fruits survived. The Bing cherry tree tried to produce for the first time this year, but the frost and wind storm ended
that effort. Better luck next year. I also planted some native persimmon seeds. Ten of the seedlings are up, now. I'll transplant eight of them this fall, in order to give them more room. Hopefully, more than one of them are female.
The Mary Washington and Purple Passion asparagus were harvested for the first time this year. Compare w/ grocery store prices, we had well over $200 of asparagus. I planted some Jersey Knight asparagus this year, too.
Locally, Mother Nature is about three to four weeks behind the norm, so production is off a bit, so far, this year.
It's the first spring for our blackberries and raspberries. We'll see how they do. Same with two new rhubarb plants.
The strawberries matured and went nuts, this year. They need some nitrogen, but other than that, they're healthy and spreading everywhere.
We have more than sixty different fruits and veggies growing in our 33' X 63' front garden now.
We have over 3,000 bulbs out there, including alliums, old fashioned lilies, grape hyacinths and spider lilies - not including the hollyhocks and sunflowers & the like. The butterfly bushes were frosted back almost to the roots last winter, but are recovering nicely and putting on blooms.
We're way behind on the original schedule for completing the garden, but we had a rather severe financial set back and it'll be a couple more years before we're back on track.
'Free' fruits and veggies will help in that effort, though. If we back off the cost of installation, we're getting our fruits and veggies for pennies on the dollar, and most of that ongoing cost is in the water bill.
Most of the bulbs and flowers were acquired through trades or outright begging. :)
On the other hand, we're giving and trading some of our veggies, bulbs and flowers to others, as well.
Total investment so far, including compost, plants, amendments and edging, is still under three grand w/ cost spread over the last three years. So, for fifty to a hundred bucks a month, local codes and nosy neighbors permitting, almost anyone can install such a garden.
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