Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Guess What Time It Is

Maybe I'm a bit early for this, but I've already begun thinking about what to plant.

I think I want the orchard to have 3 apple trees (focused on cider, keeping and eating), 2 pear trees, 2 apricot trees and 2 peach trees.  From reading the St Lawrence Nurseries catalog, I see that they don't use dwarf rootstock, meaning I'll have to allocate 20-30 feet per tree.  Meaning I have to go out and measure the space I've set aside for the orchard to make sure I could actually fit all those trees in, and then learn to prune to keep the tree sizes semi-manageable. For the first year, I'll probably buy maybe 1/3 to 1/2 of the trees, so if I screw up while learning how to plant trees, I haven't lost a huge investment.

I'm still thinking about what to plant in the three raised beds.  It's a bunch more space than I had last year and I really wouldn't count last year as a year I did any planting or taking care of plants.  What I did is plant boughten plants into the flowerbeds and then basically neglected them. I got an ear of corn from 6 plants, two tomatoes from 6 plants, a single head of broccoli from six plants and a TON of cucumbers from one plant.  I'd call this year my second try at beginning planting! 

I want to get the seed decisions out of the way early so I can figure out what to do with the dirt that the logger has, unfortunately, not provided yet and maybe build a cold frame.  Today I'm working (can't you tell?) from home because I can't bear to leave the dogs outside in this zero-degree weather with HUGE winds blowing up the hill.  Honestly, last night I thought the wind was going to blow the house down!  Didn't sleep well at all.


  1. Last year didn't count for growing stuff with all the rain, so don't beat yourself up. I'm looking out my window at work at the many inches of snow (more at my house) and thinking of planting. I was lazy at leaf time and didn't get mine in a mulchy pile. They are mowed into the woods and I can probably go get them in the spring. I'm making some adjustments to last year. Because of some late blight, I guess I'm supposed to move my tomatoes somewhere else. I need to plant more green beans. Don't know if my peas are worth the effort yet..I have a friend who plants a whole field of corn and gives me a good deal on enough to freeze. Want a couple of pumpkins. I went on some site and got an order form for some tomato seed savers and i have the little bags ready. I have been reading a little more, enough to know that saving the seeds from hybrid plants won't work, so I have some heirloom ones to try. Started some seeds last year and then bought some plants and plant some seeds in the ground. Gotta study up my screw ups and ask some gardeners some questions. Going out, then coming back here New Year's with the friend I've dragged in and another more experienced one. We'll have to pick Renee's garden brain a bit before we start playing games!!

  2. Only 18 here today at high noon...I'd like a spot next to the fire to work... Did you just order catalogs online? I have some but not many..maybe a google search.

  3. Only 18 here today at high noon...I'd like a spot next to the fire to work... Did you just order catalogs online? I have some but not many..maybe a google search.

  4. My hubby has always been in charge of researching and ordering our fruit trees, and he thinks St. Lawrence Nurseries is the BEST.

    It's not too early at all to get your seeds ordered. With more and more people getting into gardening because of the economy, I think there are going to be shortages (on particular varieties) so having them in hand come spring will be worth a lot.

    You will be able to plant more than you think in your three beds. Plenty for yourself to eat fresh and also freeze/store for next winter. Don't be afraid to plant intensively, if your soil is good. (For instance, I only put 6" between my rows of carrots, beets, radishes, onions, Swiss chard, spinach, etc. in my beds.)

    For Christmas our daughter asked her dad for a framed 4' x 8' garden bed and cold frame to go on top. For a couple of reasons, she didn't get it. (No, it wasn't that she hadn't been good!) Roy may do it yet this winter and if he does, I'll document the construction step by step for a blog post.

  5. Cool, Mama Pea! Some other bloggers have shown off their cold frames, but yours are the only ones designed to be moved that I've seen. The other ones look really heavy!

    Karen Sue, I don't have many catalogs. Every time a homesteader blogger wrote about what company they used, I went to their site and requested a catalog.

    It was 1 degree for most of the day and just went up to 3. Almost 70 inside though, with the woodstove going strong!