At this stage, that little flower reminds me somewhat of a mountain laurel blossom back East, my most favorite tree flower ever and something that grew wild and lovely in our yard, growing up. Light pink edges, dark pink inner part and those stamens just so–it is achingly beautiful to me. Tropic Snow is supposed to be the most ornamental of the peach trees I planted and I put it where you can’t see it from the family room window, thinking I might regret that later, and I just might–all I knew at the time was that Dave Wilson Nursery says these are pretty.
I found a source for the mylar ribbons to scare critters away from the fruit: put it up just before things ripen, they say, take it down after. Five bucks a roll. Hey!
Only, my squirrels have never waited for my Fuji apples to ripen before they’ve stripped the tree. This may take some working out.
With my sun sensitivity and my lupus, it’s been twenty years since I’ve walked around Wegmans Nursery in Redwood City–but it was still there and still had good reviews, they still know their stuff. I had done okay with the sunblock and the hat at the funeral and it was past time the two of us had an adventure of a day, and so add in a sun-protection jacket, wait till near closing time, and off we went.
“So what are we going to get?” Richard asked on the drive up.
“Uh, I was going for that birdscare tape,” says me.
“I thought you were going to get a second blueberry plant.” (They are much more productive with a second variety next to them.)
Me, unspoken: (YES!!!)
We got there. The guy totally knew what I was talking about when I said limb spreaders, plastic thingies with v-shaped ends for keeping the youngest plum limbs from overlapping. Those will be in on Wednesday, he told us.
Richard went hunting for the stuff to protect from peach leaf curl. Organic only. He told me the variety of blueberry was totally my choice, and although the O’Neals were pretty picked over, that’s what I wanted and I found a healthy one–and a whole lot bigger than the little one-year-old plant Stark’s had changed my mail order to (without telling me) after I’d ordered a larger two-year-0ld one: I was perfectly willing to trade a very few dollars (maybe six?) for a year of waiting for berries. Lesson learned. Stay local.
What about the soil type, Richard asked the guy, who took us to where there was blueberry-specific potting soil and put a bag in our car. (Earthworm castings are particularly important for O’Neals. Man, I sound like a real gardener. I assure you, it’s still all pretend at this point.) What about staking the new peach trees, my sweetie asked me, and I had something at home already that I thought would do. The guy told me they had a product coming in that would help support the weight of the peaches while protecting them from wildlife.
Richard had another thought. Did I want some annuals to put along the front of the house?
I was amazed. He was really getting into this. Cool. (I’ll plant some seeds for that, was my thought, trying to hold today’s costs down.)
I asked the Wegmans guy whether letting the Tropic Snow grow a few peaches now would stunt the growth of the roots? I mean, I’d only just planted the thing.
No, and he told me with a grin that I’d lucked out.
Got home. Snapped the picture up there. Found out that the reason that big pot always wobbles when a squirrel jumps up on it is that by golly one bit of the underside was broken off–who knew. Propped it up with a broken piece from a small pot the squirrels smashed off the table, and steady as she goes.
I finished planting the O’Neal in it, ran some water over my hands with the hose, checked on the plum tree–it was dormant Tuesday, it’s totally covered in tiny growth buds now–went inside, closed the sliding glass door, turned back to see…
…And there was a little house finch perched on the new blueberry plant, the one that was happily big enough to support its doing so, watching me watching it as if thanking me for all its blueberries to come.
Maybe I should plant a cherry tree to the birds in thanks for their entertaining me.
My hands still smell of rich soil with a side of sunblock.
And I even got some knitting done too.
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