Ah, spring: when flowers bloom, sun shines, breezes blow... and bare root trees go on clearance sale! Your rainy day gardener is deep in the throes of spring plant lust and went on a major shopping spree this weekend. I'm now the proud owner of a Manila mango tree, four blueberries, a Peace rose, and an Early Girl tomato, plus four (yes, four!) bare root fruit trees on sale at Orchard Supply Hardware for 50% off. That's about $9 per tree, folks!
Look left for pictures of my discount booty (hmm... maybe I shouldn't phrase it quite that way..."discount booty" suggests a different kind of sale--one likely to result in a trip to the local health department for an antibiotic). Anyway, here's what I scored for half price at OSH today:
A Snow Queen nectarine
A Goldmine nectarine
A Red Baron peach
A Twentieth Century (Nijisseiki) Asian pear
I think I officially have an orchard now, as the new trees will join 3 large orange trees, a large lemon tree, a peach tree (I forgot the variety), an ultra-dwarf nectarine, an Indio mandarinquat, 2 kumquats, a blood orange, a tangerine, a Meyer lemon, a Mexican lime, a Hachiya persimmon, an aprium, 2 apricots, a pluot, 4 apples, and an All-in-One almond. I need a twelve-step program for tree addicts:
"Hi, I'm Janet, and I'm addicted to fruit trees."
"Today I binge-planted 4 trees in a row. I can't pass a tree display in a store without stopping, and sometimes I just stand there, looking at the display with glazed eyes, drooling. And last week, I went tree-shopping before lunch. I staggered home to my family late in the afternoon, with a truckload of trees and an empty bank account."
"Here's your membership card."
Now, does anyone know where I can get an Asian pear, cheap? My new one needs a pollinator.
I love Saturdays in springtime! Yep, it's spring down here in Smogville. It was above 80 today, clear and perfect. And, our orange trees are blooming, so the entire backyard is perfumed with citrus blossoms. I celebrated this delightful day by massacring the crabgrass in my backyard. It was the horticultural equivalent of an 80s slasher flick, except it was too hot to wear a hockey mask, and I used a shovel instead of a machete.
I was too busy committing mass murder to take any garden pics, but I have a few from a couple of weeks ago. Here's our peach tree in full bloom:
I don't know why more people don't plant fruit trees instead of ornamentals. This tree is definitely pretty enough for the front yard, as lovely as any dogwood or flowering plum--but it also makes tons of yummy peaches. Here's a closeup of some flowers:
See? Every bit as gorgeous as the purely ornamental trees.
Speaking of ornamental, here's our Indio mandarinquat:
As you might guess, a mandarinquat is a cross between a mandarin and a kumquat. It makes good-sized, teardrop-shaped fruit that you eat like a kumquat, rind and all. My husband loves them.
OK,back to the flowers. Here's our Dorsett Golden apple, happily blooming away:
And now for something completely different... My husband just wandered in and did an impression of manure spreading as line dancing to a Billy Ray Cyrus song (you don't really have to ask which one, do you?). I really should change the name of this blog to Gardening in Absurdia, because that's definitely where I live.
Not exactly garden-related but too funny not to share. How I know I live in Southern California: I just got an email from Glendora Community Services with the subject line, "Snow Day Cancelled." Bewildered, I opened the email. The first sentence: "Snow City has been cancelled due to weather." For those of you who aren't Californians and are therefore very confused, Glendora schedules a snow day every year, for which they bring in a snow machine to make snow so kids can play in it. I tell ya, you just can't make this stuff up. Maybe Portland should schedule an annual Sun Day and rent a sun machine. I'm picturing a giant tanning bed...
Rainy Day Gardening is brought to you by Meg and Janet, two librarians who like to play in the dirt.
Born and raised in Northern California, Janet started gardening when she was about 4 (mumble mumble years ago). After relocating to Portland, OR, she became a true rainy day gardener, gardening in the rainy Northwest for 14 years. In 2010, she picked up stakes (and other garden implements) and moved to Southern California, where rainy day gardening is a rarity. She now gardens on about 2/10 of an acre, growing vegetables, fruit, flowers, trees, shrubs, and a fine crop of weeds. Her interests include carnivorous plants, citrus, cottage gardening, her greenhouse, and anything edible.
Meg was born in South Carolina and raised all over the country (plus Japan!), but has been living in Seattle since 1992 and now considers it "home." She has only been gardening for about two years (just bought her first home) and is still in the learning stages. Her interests include bright colors, plants she can snack on while she's weeding, and learning how to keep things healthy and happy without using chemicals.