Saturday, April 25, 2009

Backyard Orchard

Despite the Orchard Mason Bees, I've been diligent about playing 'bumble bee' myself with a small paintbrush, transferring pollen among different varieties of cherry, or pear, or peach, or apple. The peach anbd cherry ova are starting to swell, giving me hope for plentiful fruit from each. The aprium had massive die-off (again) of branches after blooming. Unclear why. Blossoms are 'almost' open from the small graft I added to Liberty apple 2 years ago. Apricot did not set fruit - not too surprising, it's only 2 years old.

Embryonic sweet cherries. I'm starting to get excited!

Embryonic peaches. I'm starting to get very excited! Also a few on the Trilite "Peach-plum" hybrid - in it's 2nd year, so I'll cross my fingers. So far - virtually no peach leaf curl. Pray to the peach gods!

North pole apple in bloom. I over-pruned the stubby branches last winter, because they were too long. It still promises a big bowl of apples if the coddling moths dont get them. This is a different style of 'backyard orchard culture' tree. It occupies a very small garden footprint, growitn as a column rather than spreading out.

Liberty apple on M27. This root stock keeps the tree ultra-small. Very pretty, even if it didn't get apples, but it's quite fruitful. This is an example of a 'backyard orchard culture' tree that barely needs pruning - it just stays small.

This multigraft pear is being maintained at under 7 feet tall. This year there are also lots of blooms - quite pretty. It had a couple dozen pears last year. This year it is near it's maximum size for backyard orchard culture, so I'll be challenged to prune carefully this summer to maintain size and still keep it fruiting.


  1. Thanks for continuing to post pictures of your Northpole apple. They are the only pictures of a mature tree that I can find on the internet. Your pictures helped me decide to get some. I also got a similar tree called Golden Sentinel.

  2. Glad it's helpful! I was thinking about a golden sentinel too - there should be room. I'll try to remember to post a photo with apples this fall, and a reference for size.