Saturday, April 17, 2010

Fruit trees: Apple blossoms, tart cherry blooms, pears have set.

Technically, this counts as "Kitchen garden" but I'm keeping the "backyard orchard" in a somewhat separate category. Plus, apple blossoms are ornamental in their own right, even if the trees don't bear fruit. Same for the tree forms, which become increasingly beautiful and gnarled with age, starting fairly early.

Asian pears have set fruit. This is the 3-variety tree planted Spring 2009.

Second variety, different coloration. All 3 have set. Cool! They'll need thinning in a few weeks, I'll keep them to one fruit to a spur.

Golden Delicious. I think this was a semidwarf, not a minidwarf. It is too vigorous. This is the first year with significant blooming. Last year there was one cluster of flowers. This is the best blooming year ever! Cool!

May not look like much, but this was just planted last month. This is Karmijm. We'll see how it looks next year, and the year after. If it blooms, I really should remove any potential fruit, to allow for growth this year. Same for the new Honeycrisp, which as discussed before was little more than a stick with a root. That one will definitely not be allowed to set any fruit this year, if it blooms.
This little tree needs a stake placed before the roots get growing too much, so that I don't damage roots. All minidwarf apple trees need a stake for support.

Jonagold. This is becoming a handsome specimen, with beautiful flowers. Last year was quite fruitful. No every-other-year bearing in this backyard-orchard-culture 'orchard'. About 6 ft tall.
I need to move the stake so that the tree doesn't lean so much. Not a problem now, but she apples weigh it down, I'd like for it to be better balanced.

Liberty. Also increasingly beautiful, year after year. Still only about 5 ft tall.

Northpole. Beautiful specimen! Last summer, fall, winter, I pruned it right, finally! This year I intend to be more diligent about protecting the apples from insects (little socks for the apples), and trim to one apple per spur, and pick them when ripe!

"Surefire" tart cherry (pie cherry). I planted this tree late winter, 2009. It's blooming. How cool is that! Probably not enough this year for a pie, but assuming they set, there'll be enough for a good taste of cherries. Maybe we'll get a pie from in in 2011, at this rate!

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