I started working on my dream orchard last weekend. My dream orchard would be a smattering of fruit trees ranging from apples, to peaches, pears, cherries, apricots and more. I planted the first two apples trees in that dream orchard.
It’s not much but it’s a start. They were $45.00 each, so I think $90.00 in trees for my first year is plenty. The tree’s probably won’t even bear fruit this year, anyway. Maybe not even next year.
The two trees I planted were Braeburn, which is an early season variety, and Gala which is a mid season variety. I was required to purchase two, because they each need each other to cross pollinate with. I purposely chose the Gala tree as a mid season variety because it will cross pollinate with either an early or late season variety. Later, if I choose to add a late season variety as well, I’ll be all set.
I had a nice conversation with the lady who worked in the garden section at Agway. I had asked if they carried any dwarf varieties and she laughed at me, then politely guided me to the semi-dwarf varieties they carried. She told me she gets that question a lot and that I shouldn’t worry about the theoretical size that the tree can achieve, but rather that I should be proactive about pruning the trees in early spring in order to control the size to my needs. I figured that was advice that made sense, assuming I can remember and have time to complete the pruning while the tree is still dormant.
The most daunting task was the digging of the holes. I expected this to be a lot more difficult, but luckily I was too lazy the day before and that night we had a downpour which loosened the soil. For the first hole, I got a little too dig happy and the hole ended up being deeper than I needed, so I had to put some dirt back.
My daughter helped me with this task by separating out the rocks. Later, after I placed the trees in the holes, she helped me to mix and spread out the top soil and compost soil. I don’t think she believed me at first when I told her she could use her bare hands to work in the soil. She kept having the inclination to go wash her hands. I assured her it was fine and that we could wash our hands later.
The blossoms on the tree are beautiful!