Codling moth damage -or- Where does the wormhole go?
(Pictured: Asian Pear)
I’m just happy I found the damage (the rest of the pear was edible, delicious, and had no difference in quality of taste or texture) and not the grubby worm.
Well, I’ve moved out of that apartment that I covered in edibles since, like, January. I brought with me the blackberry and the lemon plant. The blackberry looks really good save for a few purple splotchy marks on the leaves which may be some sort of rust, but the lemon’s new leaves are curling up a bit. I gave it some water and adjusted its light so hopefully that helps. I’m excited for the blackberry to go dormant so I can try my hand at pruning and all the fall maintenance blackberries require.
I’ll still have to go back to that apartment to take care of the strawberry (get it ready for winter) and visit my cute old neighbors. They were really sad to see me go, probably just as sad as I am that I couldn’t take them with me.
I’ll get some pictures of the lemon and blackberry soon. If I see my peach tree at any point I’ll be sure to add those pictures as well. I gave it a third (and final) spraying of borer-miner killer so hopefully those pests are gone for good. It’s getting too close to dormant time to worry about something killing my tree from the inside out, or weakening it for the winter. I want a good start so I can expect timely fruit!
I had a non-dried non-Newton fig today and it tasted like a mellowed-out, mild, mulberry. And I mean that in a good way. I wish I had gotten a picture of it but I thought I’d be able to get more at the grocery store. Turns out people are crazy for figs and they were already sold out! Sad face.
Lately, we’ve been getting a lot of fruit in the office because a lot of delicious things are coming into season. Namely apples (and Asian Pears if you like ‘em). I also attended an Orchard Tour here and learned a lot about the trees we have growing as well as the past, present, and future of our company.
The first image here is of some apples with what are called “apple warts” on them. They are commonly found on disease resistant apple varieties and are actually perfectly fine to eat. They just don’t look picture-perfect.
The second image is of an apple leaf with brown spots on it. This isn’t caused by a disease or a fungus but is actually caused by splash-back from an herbicidal spray. This is probably not something you’ll commonly see if you manually (and properly) spray the few trees you have in your acre or so of a back yard. This occurrence is not unusual in commercial orchards, however; you may actually see this if you spray a dormant oil when it is too hot out, which may result in a chemical burn on your plants.
Thirdly, these three apples were the ones I selected from the Orchard Tour. I got a September Wonder Fuji (pictured left) because I’d had one before and I know I like them. They are said to be crisp, sweet, and an all-around good flavored apple. I wanted to try the Winter Banana Antique Apple (pictured center) because it intrigued me with its apparent banana flavor characteristic. I have been wanting to try a Cox’s Orange Pippin Antique Apple (pictured right) since I learned it existed and couldn’t resist this opportunity to have one fresh from a tree and picked myself.
Personal Experience: The Winter Banana apple had no banana notes/flavors whatsoever. To me, it actually tasted like a mix between the tartness of Granny Smith and the juicy, soft, sweet, taste of a Golden Delicious. Verdict? Disappointed. But in all honesty, I probably ate this one too soon. I should have let it ripen a bit more. I’ll give it another chance another day. The Cox’s Orange Pippin was more mealy than I had hoped, which would have disappointed me but it was exceptionally flavorful. Overall it was actually a tasty treat. Now, I’ve eaten a SunCrisp apple before and that one is such a delight! It has Cox’s Orange Pippin parentage (the other parent being Golden Delicious, leaving me to wonder where the crispness comes from…) so I guess it is a situation where the offspring outshines the parent.
Watering too frequently may not only drown roots but it will also encourage shallow rooting. In the case of trees that require deep rooting (to avoid being blown over among other things), it is important to allow them to “struggle” just a bit so that their roots grow deeper.
The art of watering and steps to mastering it.
I’ve started keeping a little pocket notebook that I’ll carry around with me to jot down things I hear everywhere about tips, tricks, and facts to do with habits/characteristics/quirks/whatever of flowers, roots, plants, trees, and fruit.
A peach, even if it is a freestone variety, may cling to the pit if it is not allowed to ripen on the tree.
I’m not going to assume that freestone is a well-known term because I’ll admit I didn’t know what it meant a year ago. Peaches, plums (including pluots/plumcots), apricots (including apriums), nectarines, and I’m pretty sure cherries count too, are considered “stone fruits”. This refers to the pit inside them. When a fruit’s characteristic is “freestone” it means the fruit pulls away from the pit cleanly and easily. It is ideal for people who are interested in canning/preserving their fruit or using it to cook. It cuts back on labor and you don’t lose so much fruit because it’s stuck to a part you don’t eat.
Fruit like apples, pears, asian pears, quinces, and things like that are called “pome fruits”. Instead of having a pit like stone fruits do they have their seeds in a core casing.
Water, weather, and excessive rain may cause a freestone fruit to cling.
Water, too much or too little, does affect the fruit production and quality. Fruit trees require about an inch of rain per week which is equivalent to a gallon of water per tree (if you don’t have any rain coming, a bit more if you’re in a severe drought and high temperatures, making sure to water when it’s cool out so it doesn’t just evaporate right off). Weather, too hot or too cold or too back and forth, also affects the fruit as does the amount of actual sunlight available to your tree. Excessive rain may drown the roots in an area where the excess water is not properly drained and this will affect how your tree takes in nutrients and since that all goes to the growth of the tree and fruit itself, needless to say it affects the quality of the fruit as well.
It doesn’t matter what you think you’re doing right or by the book or how things happened last year or in a different spot, you can’t control the weather or your environment and sometimes things don’t happen the way you plan or expect. Like raising kids.
Use what you have.
Think outside the box. Think outside yourself.
“It’s about being creative, a little rebellious and doing what you dream about no matter how much or how little space you have. And we think that is a pretty big idea.” - Pinched from IKEA
Granny Smith branch with locust damage. This stitch-like effect called “slitting” is a classic sign locusts have been in your trees most likely laying their eggs.
I finally have expectations for this blackberry though. It’s a beast now! I hope it’s a berry-factory next June.
This is the last family portrait. Soon after this, the basil were disposed of and the tomato plant went to the dumpster yesterday. Totally over these annuals.