Sunday, July 31, 2011

finally seeing blue

 I planted blueberries five years ago, anticipating that I would have huge harvests within a year or two. But as usual, things didn't work out as planned (do they ever?) Plants got nibbled by rabbits in winter, weeds competed in summer, and every year I was left with blueberry bushes about the size of the ones I had planted. But last fall, I took some time to weed the bed and pile on a heaping load of pine needle mulch (plenty of that around here). The response was very positive: good plant growth in spring, good flower set, and now, ripe berries. Yeah, they look imperfect, but they taste wonderful!

This is the entire harvest, and that's before tasting. Yeah, I know...but if I do what I did again this fall, things should just get better, right?

I saw another kind of blue in the blueberry patch- blue vervain. This wildflower is one of my favorites for its spikes of dainty purple-blue flowers. I'll let this weed stay.

The rest of the garden is coming along, although I have a resident deer who is quite fond of cucumber plants, bean leaves, Swiss chard, and even tomato plant tops. I managed to harvest enough snow peas and sugar snap peas for a couple meals, although I won't have enough to freeze. Despite the deer depredation, I may be harvesting green beans in a week or so. And my first summer squash is on its way.

I can't believe it's almost August. Every summer I have grandiose plans of accomplishing so many things that can only happen in the summer, and I always fall short. I have managed to restart my running this summer though, and I am feeling the benefits: 5 or so pounds lost, hopefully more to follow, and the exhilaration of jumping into the pond after a 5.8 mile run being chased by deer flies. I only saw one vehicle the whole time this morning.


Floridacracker said...

My crop is just finishing as yours ripens.

Do you grow any tree fruits there, like cherries or apples?

Rooster613 said...

Hi, Deb! Your berries look good -- my cherry tree had very few cherries this year, poor pollenation, I think. My apples are doing well, tho. Stay cool and stay dry and watch out for those cursed deer flies!

webb said...

Beautiful berries. Mine are long gone, but I got about the same number. The second flush of berries were eaten by some critter. I put netting over the bush, but I think the birds found a way to get in anyway. I'm willing to share, tho.

Elise said...

I like to pick wild blueberries here in Pennsylvania. I either missed them completely this year or it was a VERY bad year for them...I think a bit of both. I have a bunch of plums on my tree for the first time ever...I'm sure it will hail or something bad like that...hee hee.

RuthieJ said...

Oh Deb, 5 years for blueberries? I put in 3 plants this spring and was looking forward to berries next summer. I'd better utilize your mulching and care tips if I want to pick blueberries next summer!