Saturday, June 11, 2011

Berries (and maybe nuts) fruiting soon!

I planted 3 Nanking Cherries 3 summers ago, mainly to divert the birds from other fruiting bushes or trees. This year there are cherries! (Last year I had only about a dozen cherries total from the 3 trees.) The berries are just starting to turn red, and will sweeten as they ripen.

I have 3-4 blueberries in pots that really need to be planted in the ground I prepared last year with sulfur to lower the pH. Looks like at least one of them will have lots of blueberries! To be sure not to stress the bushes and lose fruit, I'll wait to transplant until after fruiting. (Besides, the area needs major weeding first.)

The huge thornless Triple Crown Blackberries are blooming, so there should be lots of blackberries in August. I have been cutting down some of my red raspberries this year while weeding the patch, so the raspberry crop will be diminished for 2011.

My Chinquapin nut bush is starting to make flower/fruit buds for the first time. It needs a pollinator, which I do not have, but hopefully my neighbor's Chinese Chestnut is not too far away to act as a pollinator. I've been looking for a 2nd chinquapin for a pollinator, but they are expensive. A friend up in the northeast send me a sprouting seed this spring, but I managed to kill it.

Gooseberries: I have two varieties, one is a blush pinkish-green (Pixwell) and the other is a Hinoki Red. This is their third or maybe fourth year and they are still less than 2' tall. I wonder if they will ever grow up?

Currants: I have 2 black currant bushes, and 2 red. I don't see any sign of flowering so I'm wondering if a late freeze got them.

I DID have a dwarf elderberry but it looks like The Kid got it with the mower. The photo above is a wild elderberry growing in the wildness between my creek and the road. The mowers who trim the grass along the road usually manage to cut it down before it fruits. (Fruits come from the white flowers, upper left.)

And lastly, itty-bitty Grape nubbins. These are not table grapes so I neglect their care and leave them for the birds. They cover the end wall of a small shed.

All in all, there will be some kind of fresh berries soon. I plan to eat some fresh, and some with my homemade ice cream!

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