Monday, January 22, 2007

What a lovely weekend.

After the freezing temperatures we've been having, I was glad to see it had warmed up over the weekend. In fact Sunday was warmer outside than it was inside the house.

I actually had to water the garden, which is strange for January. We've only had 1/4 inch of rain this month and since I think we'll be having a warming trend this week, I thought I better water the beds. Fortunately, the swiss chard, red mustard, cabbages, carrots and beets sailed through the cold temperatures just fine. A couple of things froze out, like some volunteer cosmos, a nasturtium, and some of the calendula that had just sprouted. But nothing of note. My fuschia arborescens took a hard hit. But it should be back just fine. It's had quite a struggle of late, first there was the rain which caused a growth spurt. Then the wind storms came through which snapped off all the new growth. (I took the opportunity to daub them in root tone and attempt some propagation.) Now the poor thing is 3/4 frost damaged. I was planning on pruning it to be a bit bushier but I'm a bit stumped at the moment as how I should prune it now. I think it will be best to wait for a bit longer. I'll see if there's some buds next weekend.

I was able to prune the apricot and the pear. Neither were pruned very hard as the pear is nearly perfect in shape and size. I guess I should remove some of the spurs so that it will renew them. One major branch was taken out of the apricot. It's shading the center and although that branch had lots of growth from last year, I decided it is better for the overall tree to open it up. This summer I need to do a little height adjustment. I prefer to pick fruit while standing on the ground instead of on a ladder.

I also pruned out old canes from the blueberries, and cleaned up any rose bushes that I could see. I know there are 3 or 4 more to clean up. I can't wait to settle them into the perennial bed.

I'm moving the temporary beds that the tomatoes were in last year to the back of the yard. I noticed that Bambi has made a visit and nibbled some of the penstemon and sheared back one Alstromeria. I think this might be the year I add the water scare crow. I'm also trying to decide what to plant in those beds. I'm considering strawberries if I can get some quail protection. I only got one or two strawberries last year because the quail snatched them as soon as they were ripe enough. At least they ate those and left the blueberries alone. Although I think the flash tape was the only reason I was able to have a crop.

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