Just like that, we have an orchard


Finally, after months of delay, we have planted our fruit trees!

Say hello, dwarf pear!

It’s been a surprisingly tough process to get our little orchard going, mostly because planting trees involves long-term decision making. It’s very different from choosing where to plant a lettuce patch that will be around all of three months. Our trees will—unless the deer have the last word—be with us for years.

So, we agonized over what kind of fruit to grow; then we put off buying the trees for a long time because we weren’t sure where to put them. We finally bought five trees right before our gift certificate to Edible Landscaping expired; that was in the fall, so they spent the winter in pots under a big pile of mulch.

After more delays through the spring (see: millions of other projects), we at last figured out where we could plant our trees without A) shading the garden, B) getting in our way as we move carts and wheelbarrows around, or C) edging too close to some black walnut trees that might kill them. (Walnuts put a chemical into the soil that’s toxic to many other plants.)

And then it was time for the relatively easy part: planting the trees. I say "relatively" because digging holes in our stony soil is never exactly a breeze. Nonetheless, it’s done and we are thrilled with our new additions: two pears, two paw paws and a fig!

A particularly well-protected paw paw.

Stay tuned re: the deer and many other factors. I’m already mulling over where we could squeeze in some blueberries.