Sunday, October 27, 2013

New Trees progress report.

Cherry "Almaden Duke"

Jujube "Li"
 Here is the progress report for new trees planted 2012 - 2013.  Most, but not all, are fruit trees.  They are young.  Not all are pictured here.  They are in no particular order.

Duke Cherry "Almaden Duke".  Now 6 ft tall.  Growth this year, 6".  Transplant from Vancouver yard last fall.

Ginkgo seedling from Illinois.  My dad's collected seed, tree is the smallest of the 3 I grew.  6ft tall, growth 0 inches.  There were tufts of new growth from each node, but no stem extension.  Leaves remain green so far.

Madrone.  New planting this fall.  6 ft tall.

Sweet Cherry "Vandelay".  New bare root from Raintree, started late this winter, before my surgery.  3'8" of which 2" is new.

Sweet Cherry Sweetheart.  As for Vandelay.  3'10" of which  1'2" is new.  Bloomed after planting, no fruit.

"Greenspire" Linden, South side of yard near house.  6'6" of which 1'6" is new. 

 Jujube "Li".  Planted as container plant last fall.  about 1 ft tall, of which 6" is new.

Pawpaw "NC-1".  All pawpaws were planted summer 2012.  2'7" of which 7" is new.

Pawpaw "NC-1"
Pawpaw "Rebecca's gold".  This tree was eaten by an animal, leaving only about 3".  It grew to 1ft 7" tall, 3 stems.

Pie Cherry "North Star".  Planted as container tree from Lowes, late Spring.  This tree is 5'4".  Growth occurred before I planted it, about 1 ft was new.  This tree had cherries when I bought it.

Pie Cherry "Montmorency".  6'3".  I moved this from Vancouver last summer.  18" of the growth was this year.  This tree bore cherries this year.

Wild Plums - grown from seeds summer / fall 2012.  Tallest is 4'3", next is 3', and smallest is 2'.

Peach "Indian Blood".    Now 4' tall, of which 1ft 4 inches is new.

Persimmon "Seijo".  Now 4'10", of which 15"  is new.  This was bare root planted this year, from Raintree.  The growth was nice, but there is a wound on the north side, narrow, extending much of the old stem.  The wound is about a mm wide.  I don't know what that bodes for next year.

Pawpaw "Rebecca's Gold"
 Persimmin "Nikita's Gift".  2'6" of which 2" is new.  Small but survived the first year.  Persimmons are considered difficult to start, but making it through the first year is encouraging. 
Peach "Charlotte"

Peach "Oregon Curl-Free"
 Peach "Charlotte".   6ft total, of which 2'2" is new.  Fast starting tree.  Moved from Vancouver last summer, started from bare root Spring 2012 as container tree.
Peach seedling and Grape "Price"

Peach "Oregon Curl Free".  Total 4'5" of which 3'7" is new.  Same issues as for "Charlotte"
Pawpaw "Sunflower"
Pie Cherry "Surefire"

Apple "Red Sentinel"  2'4" tall and "Golden Sentinel" 2'4" tall.  Minimal added height this year.  These were planted last summer.  The rootstock may be super-dwarfing. 

Linden "Greenspire" in front yard.  This was the first of the Lindens.  9"  tall of which 1" is new. 

Peach Seedling 8" - unknown parentage, suspect genetic dwarf.  Volunteer in vegetable bed, which was treated with compost.  If it develops leaf curl, I don't plan to keep it  The "Price" grape 8" was a cutting from my vines at home.

American Linden "Redmond"  5 ft tall, 4" is new.  This was container tree planted last winter.

Pear "Rescue"  4 ft tall, 9" is new, and pear "Orca, 4 ft, 9" is new.  Both bare root trees from Raintree, planted late winter 2013.

Apple "Spitzenberg" 3" of new growth on 6" of rootstock.  This was new graft, grown from new graft early Spring and given TLC with fertigation; Apple "Sutton's Beauty" 1'6" of new growth on 6" rootstock, same situation.

Chinese Haw "Red Sun", 4'8" of which 1" is new.   Bare root from "One Green World" nursery planted last fall. 
Plum "Stanley"

Sweet Cherry "Sweetheart"

Plum "Toka"
Mulberry "Illinois Everbearing", 6'4" tall, of which 11'1" is new this year.  Moved from Vancouver yard last fall.

Plum "Stanley" 7'6" of which about 2' is new.  Moved from Vancouver last year.

Plum "Toka" 5'10" tall, of which 1'4" is new and plum "Satsuma" 5'6" of which 3" is new, both bought as potted trees last summer on sale at Home Depot.

The Sourwood I planted in Sept, is 7'8" tall.

I've started applying a layer of compost around each tree.  Ran out, more expected with another truckload of compost this week.

Fig Tree Progress Report.

Vancouver Brunswick Fig Tree
Brunswick ("vancouver" because the source tree was here in Vancouver) - survived move to Battleground last Dec.  New growth was damaged by late frost.   Growth this year was 7".  No figs this year.  No concerns about green twigs.  This tree is mature, all growth is well lignified.

LSU Champagne.  Height now 4'8", all of which is new, grown from cutting this year.  Rapid growth due to fertigation while grown in container.  Also chickens were housed in this spot for a few weeks.  I had pinched the top to stop growth / encourage branching.   Today I picked the first two ripe figs.  Sweet.  Concern:  About the top foot is green with minimal lignification.  Will the top survive freezing?

Atreano.  Height now 5', all of which is new, grown from cutting this year.  Rapid growth due to fertigation while grown in container.   Also the chicken issue, above.  I had pinched the top to stop growth / encourage branching.   There are 2 large figs, still green.  Will I get ripe ones before frost?  Concern:  About the top foot is green with minimal lignification.  Will the top survive freezing?
Champagne and Atriano fig trees.

Row of fig trees.

Carini.  Height now 3'6", all of which is new, grown from cutting this year.  Rapid growth due to fertigation while grown in container.  I had pinched the top to stop growth / encourage branching.   There are still 2 large figs, still green.  I have eated a few from this tree.  Early starter.   Will I get ripe ones before frost?  Concern:  About the top 6" is green with minimal lignification.  Will the top survive freezing?

Petite negri.  Did not measure.  Knee high, new growth about 6".   Planted 2012.  Slow grower, had chewing animal damage last winter.  New figs did not have time to mature.

Smith.  My fastest grower this year, although Champagne and Atreano were close.  Since I pinched the tops of all three to encourage branching, comparison is difficult.  4' Tall.  Did not grow as much after planting as those other 2 listed so far.  No figs this year.  Some concerns about  lack of lignification but not as much as those two listed.

Front - Back:  Carni, Petite negri, Smith, Sal's, Tiger.
 Sal's.   Now 3'9", of which 9"  is new.  Same frost problem as Brunswick.  Planted last summer.  About half dozen new figs this year, some of the best tasting.  It should be well established now.  I thought it might take off and grow faster, but this is a more difficult site and it was not fertigated.  No frost concern, the growth is well lignified.

LSU Tiger.  3'5", all of which is new, grown from cutting this year.  Same fertigation as the other new fig trees.  Competed with Carini for the first ripe figs on new trees.  Lignification looks better than the other new trees.

The containerized trees are spares - go keep in garage as replacements, in case the in-ground trees don't survive the winter.  They can be give-aways if the in-ground trees do survive.  They are smaller than the planted ones.  I chose the biggest ones for planting.

The potted trees did not get watered in the past 2 weeks, and are entering dormancy.  Brunswick is also entering dormancy, and the others are beginning to lose leaves / yellow leaves as well.
Container fig trees.

Onions, garlic, shallots.

Green onions from Egyptian Walking Onions
 Nice to have some scallions from the garden this time of year.  These were Egyptian Walking onions, that I did not pull out.  They resprouted and are beginning to be big enough to eat.

The onion bed is starting to grow.  Planted roughly 5 weeks ago.  At the end is a row of cilantro, about an inch tall, planted the same time.  The Egyptian Walking onions are all up.
Onion bed at one month
 The Yellow Potato onions are starting to grow.  Most are still not showing above ground.

The garlic, planted about 4 weeks ago, is several inches tall.  Right on schedule.

Yesterday I cleared out a 3-foot by 4 foot section of the tomato bed.  I added 1/2 bag of chicken compost, and planted shallots.  The shallot starts were saved from this summer.  I planted 4 rows.  That is from the original 2 rows.  About the same amount is available for eating.  Starting them later this year.   These shallots might have been larger, if I didn't let them go to seed.  The honeybees loved the flowers, so I didn't want to remove the flower heads.
Garlic bed at one month

Holland White Shallots

Fall Color - in Home Orchard and fruit garden.

Seijo Persimmon

 Some of the fruit trees and shrubs are showing great fall color.  They may be too young to know how they'll turn out.   The colors of these young trees and shrubs are beautiful.

I read elsewhere that persimmons have beautiful fall leaves.  The summer leaves are also handsome - shiny, green, tropical-looking.  Seijo has nice amber color.

I don't have the variety names for these blueberries.  They have various colors, from crimson to glowing amber.


Apricot seedling

Indian Blood Peach
The apricot seedling is a guess  It came with the place, unlabeled, and has not borne fruit.  It grew significantly this year - next year maybe I'll have a better idea.
Satsuma plum
Nikita's Gift Persimmin

Wild Plum Seedling
Indian Blood Peach - at this point is the only peach tree with colorful leaves.  The others are still green.

Satsuma plum had dark burgundy leaves, from late summer to now.  The mint is too big for this small tree - I should pull it out and opt for a smaller growing herb.

Nikita's Gift persimmon - even if there are no fruits, the fall color makes it worth having.  That is, if it grows into a nice tree.  Which may take a few years.

The wild plum seedling was one of the ones I started last year.  Of the others, one is dropping its leaves without much  of a show, and the other remains green.

Blueberry. Name unknown.
This does not include the Buffalo grape pictured earlier.  So far that variety is the only one in my yard with colorful fall leaves.

Bearded Iris Beds, maintenance and unexpected blooming.

Sunny Disposition Oct 29 2013

Bearded Iris Bed #1 ready for winter
 Today did some minor cleanup of the bearded Iris beds.  Very superficial, using garden fork to break up the soil surface and remove weed seedlings.  Cut off dying leaves, using garden scissors.

Interesting, this is the first time I've had a rebloom for Bearded Iris "Sunny Disposition".  Nice thick petal substance.  Nice fragrance.
Bearded Iris Beds #2 and #3 ready for winter

Wednesday, October 09, 2013

And a few more....

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I forgot I bought the anemones and found them in the garage.  All of the others are also considered deer resistant and possibly rabbit resistant. 

Bulb season is about over.  Spring should look like spring....

The Camassia quamash was a good find.  I've been wanting to add them.  Native to Pacific NW, considered OK bee forage, and tolerant of conditions here.

The Hyacinthoides wasn't necessary.  I can move some from the yard in Vancouver, and probably will.  This looked like a colorful mix.

All are planted.  That took about 15 minutes.  Then it rained. 

Tuesday, October 08, 2013

Planted a few more bulbs

Daffodils and Fritillaria
I've tried in the past to grow Fritillaria.  No success.  This time, I planted it on its side.  According to the instructions, that will reduce the risk for water collection in the bulb's folds.

I planted the 15 Daffodils in groups, 3 clusters.

More color for spring.  If the Fritillaria does not grow, there should still be the Daffodils.

Brugmansia blossom.

 First blossom for brugmansia, which I started from cutting this Spring.  I did not know what the color would be.

Interesting.  White with pink blush, double flower.

Creating a Patina for Copper Beehive Roof.

First Treatment Oct 1 2013
 The copper roof of the first beehive darkened, but did not develop a light green patina.  The dark metal absorbed heat on sunny days, and was too hot to the touch.  I covered it with foam and reflective insulation, which helped.  But now I want a green patina, which will be much lighter, almost white.  That should reflect more light.

I looked up various recipes for creating a patina.  Just letting it weather, that could take years.

Most of the recipes called for various chemicals, especially ammonia.  I didn't want to buy chemicals just for this treatment.  I also saw historical information, and folklore, that sculptors and roofers pee on fresh copper to create a patina.

It sounds unusual, and to some might be unpleasant, but there's no reason not to use that approach.  I used a plant mist-er to spray fresh urine on the copper surface, then let it dry.  Each day that I'm at the Battleground place, I've been adding another treatment.

So far, so good.  A patina is rapidly forming on the copper top.  The first beehive, which is also outside in the same weather, doesn't have even a hint of light green.  Just dark oxidation.

I'll continue the spray treatment until the patina is more fully developed.  I like the effect so far.  There is no accumulation or discoloration of the white paint.  Despite what might be thought, no odor that I can appreciate.

The same liquid can also serve as deer and rabbit deterrent.  It has the advantage of being free.  The disadvantage is, it washed off in the rain.  I've been using up left-over liquid by spraying around fruit trees.
After 4 treatments Oct 8 2013

Sunday, October 06, 2013

Historic Bearded Irises. Order for next Spring.

Crimson King.  Old House Gardens
 This is my iris order from Old House Gardens.  Link is to the online catalog.  Based on this year's experience, most of them should bloom a couple of months after planting.  Most are compact, a few are larger.

I think, by planting actively growing rhizomes shortly prior to bloom, that sets them back a little.  But these varieties are not easy to find.   The rhizomes send last spring were healthy appearing, clean, and grew nicely.  And it's nice to see them bloom so soon after planting, even if not full size.  I liked the prior order, and have confidence I will like this one.
Dauntless.  Old House Gardens.

Frank Adams.  Old House Gardens.

Mrs. George Darwin.  Old House Gardens.

Plumeri.  Old House Gardens.

Rosy Wings.  Old House Gardens.

Wabash.  Old House Gardens.

The start of fall color. Sourwood and Buffalo Grape.

Sourwood (Oxydendrum arboreum)
 The first of fall color at the Battleground place.  Sourwood (Oxydendrum arboreum).  This may be partly the effect of being a new planting.  But sourwood trees are known for red fall color.   It's the reddest tree so far.  Probably the reddest of my fall trees.

Others here that that may have good fall color - the ginkgo trees (brilliant yellow) Blueberry plants (red), and persimmons (expecting red or yellow).  I don't know about the others.
Buffalo Grape

Buffalo Grape
This is the only grape vine that I've seen with such brilliant color.  This is "Buffalo", a blue Concord-like seeded grape.  It grew faster than any of my new varieties.  I think I bought this one at Fred Meyer this Spring.  I doubt there will be grapes next year, but it's now big enough, next Spring/Summer I can train the cordons for grapes the following year.

The newest leaves are not colorful.  At least not yet.  I'm hoping the colorful leaves will be typical next fall, and not the green leaves.

Still in a deer and rabbit cage.  More screening  to install this fall ' winter.

Bearded Irises - Fall Cleanup

Bearded Iris Bed #1.  Heritage Varieties.

Bearded Iris Bed #2.  Heritage Varieties.
This weekend I cleaned up the bearded iris beds. 

I've done much of the cleanup over the past few weeks.  So it wasn't that bad this weekend.

The beds are not purely Heritage vs. Modern.  There are a few modern varieties in teh Heritage beds, and a few Heritage varieties in the modern variety bed. I might sort them out.  One day.

Cleanup involved pulling out some companion plants that overgrew.  Pulling out weeds.  Careful cultivation.  With a dinner fork.  Easy with raised bed.

More crushed eggshells scattered on the surface.

Bearded Irist Bed #3.  Modern Varieties.
I did plant one additional variety.  Dried out rhizome.  "Before the Storm".  Near-black, midnight blue.  I didn't need one more.  I get too much enjoyment from growing dried out looking rhizomes.

I trimmed dead and dying leaves from the iris plants.  Inspected about 4 times.  They look a lot more healthy.

Added Sempervivum and some small growing sedum plants, salvaged from previous gardening efforts.  Idea is for growing companion plants among the irises.  Not as rank growing as culinary herbs.  A few might be on top of bulbs I planted earlier, but that's OK.

I need to make space for heritage varieties I ordered from Old House Gardens.  Those arrive in March or April.  Mrs. George Darwin, Frank Adams, Crimson King, Dauntless, Plumeri, Rosy Wings, Wabash.  Plus additional Flavescens and Honorabile / Sans Souci to flesh out the small starts of those I planted this year.  There is room.  I might have to move a few less desirable selections out, which is OK.