Saturday, July 22, 2017

Dog Roses of Pumpkin Hill

 On the Dog's Plot four or five acres, and in the brush land and pasture land surrounding us we have the Rose that grew at the doorstep of the original homestead house and, then some seedlings I brought here from Ithaca along with Rose of Sharron, which is not a Rose at all, and then out back in the orchard and conspiciusly out on the cattle range, there are occasional multi flora, roses with there simple, small, and multitudinous flowers...a generally unpopular escape from Gardens, and then the Roses that we used to call Swamp Roses because they grow in my native swamps up north, along the lake shore, and beside streams.
        We call this place Dog's Plot, and because these pink, sometimes white, simple Roses are abundent here, arching, abounding, I began referring to them  as Dog Roses, and was then very surprised when my friend Der Rosenmeister, that Dog Rose was really the official English name for those Roses.  Several sub species exist, and so do Swamp Roses, which are something else.
     And of course Dog Roses turn out to be more than special;  magical and possiblly world saving, according to Wiki and Nature Enquirer, as soon as they get the news.
      But just look at these Dog Roses.  That is all you know, and all you need to know.  Truth is beauty and beauty is truth, and sleeping Dogs never lie.

Tuesday, July 4, 2017

Three Strkes on Two Scythes

  I love my scythes and I abuse them terribly with my over-enthusiasm, which every  once in a while comes up against hard objects.  Each of these two twenty four inch ditch scythes have been broken three times and welded twice.  The welds themselves held, but I will be retiring these two now, ordering a new ditch scythe or two, and hacking with my brush scythe for the time being.

Monday, June 19, 2017

The Dissappearing Plums

   For several years now I have been cultivating a pair of wild Plum trees growing  in the hedgerow.  I   also planted several planted several cultivated  Plum Trees six or ten years ago, each of which has contracted the Black Knot disease and died down to the natve, ungraftred stock which, like the wild Plums, is resistant to the Black knot.  Several of these trees have come back strong from the roots so I have planted a couple more Plums  grafted on Black Knot resistant root stock, from which I will  someday  cut scions to graft onto the old stock, and onto the Wiuld Plums.  Meanwhile, the wild Plums I have bneen cultivating have flowered and born fruit, and recently I returned to them wanting to try  the fruit and they were all gone.  Stolen maybe by  the desperate poor, the Arab State, Possums, or Racoons.  But I don't know why the Coons or Possums would do that .... we feed them so well otherwise. We'll get by.


Monday, May 1, 2017

Flower Bud Bust

That warm spell in February tricked out most of my Pear blossom buds just enough that they burst into powder if you flick them now, some are more resilient, some have already  flowered .... maybe a tenth of my hundred or so due producers, but more then last year, which was a climate fluctuation disaster.

Sunday, April 30, 2017

     There are few native American Fruit trees .... not Apples, not Pears, or Peaches or Sweet Cheries, but the North American Plum is one and we here are at one of the fingers of it's northern extent.  Maybe the Cayuga had them in their orchards along with the Pears and Apples and Peaches and so on introduced to them by the early Jesuit missionaries, but here are a couple thriving here on ?Dog's Plot through no intervention of our own and, since one can graft cultivated Plum types onto it, we will be doing that.

Friday, April 28, 2017

Pears on the Move

The floor of the woods around Dog's Plot is covered with Pear blossom petals,  Pears are non- native invasive opportunists in abandoned farmland such as ours....was.  We owe the Pears to Jesuit Missionaries who traveled with their gardens, and  came here a couple of hundred years before the British, by  way of Canada and set up missions near here.  By  the time the American Revolutionaries  burnt down the Cayuga Village in Aurora and cut down their orchards, the Cayuga were living  in wood-frame houses, just like the colonists, many of them practicing Catholics of a sort, and, in addition to their own Corn, Squash, and Beans, were growing many European crops, including Pears and Apples, neither of which are native, and maybe Broccoli for all we know .....but conspicuously, blessedly now, Pears.  A great virtue of the Pear tree is that when you cut it down it sprouts form the stump and roots, matures, and goes to seed.  The naturalized trees vary as seedling trees do, and they would mostly make a good Perry Wine or Brandy, but I graft cultivated types onto the saplings that come up on Dog's Plot.

Thursday, January 19, 2017

Poor Orchard's Almanak, January 19, 2016

Pictured below is my ten foot, three pointed ordhard ladder, which is as high and heavy as I want to lug around for harvesting pears and tending the trees, so I was up there today tying orange bailing twine.  to the high growing ends, some of which I cut off for grafting buds, then I bent the branches to spread them and get them growing outwards instead of upwards,  then I tied the ends of the twine to lower branches of the native tree that I have left on for that purpose to keep the deer from rubbing, and provide them with all the green growing bud they are going to need.  I notice that some of the winter buds have already broken open, though it its getting late in January.  I don't care so much if I don't even get to ski the orchard this winter, just so long as we don't have a season where the winter is only two days long and comes in April.

 The Watercress in the brook I have been cultivating, is still green, both under the ice and in the open.
    The Mustard that self seeded this summer in the Mustard patch, are still doing just fine, and without any mulch, though I have also covered other mustard with row cloth, and have been harvestig it now and then.

  I let the chickens into the garden behind their house and let them root in the garden here i already dug out Sunchokes and mulched with straw.  The Chickens dug out these mushrooms that had been growing under and in the straw invisibly.  They are, at this time, still Unidentified Fungal Objects.


  What kind of god would create a mushroom that looks AND SMELLS as good as these do, kill thousands of people every year?  Just one of the mysteries that make life interesting.  Do not depend on me or any picture or vlogger on the internet to identify this as a deadly poisonous mushroom.  There is too much to learn about mushrooms that it might be just as well to just let them be them selves and do their jobs.  Although, I must confess, that I have bothered a lot of Chicoletta mushrooms, using Chickens to guide me