Garden Report: August 15

I've been doing a lot of weeding lately, and it's been taking up most of my free time. Just me and my little wagon, making endless trips from the front to the back. So even though I was trying to reduce my number of compost piles by combining the two big ones, I now have the two smaller bins, a massive pile, and yet another massive pile on the other side of the chicken yard. As you can see, the girls have been very industrious about spreading the stuff around.

Compost pile out of control

The girls have also been helping me out with removing lesser weeds. I generally don't bother trying to remove new shoots, because they're a lot of trouble and I have bigger problems to deal with. But the chickens are quite fond of a baby weeds salad before bedtime, so in the places where they like to snack, the weed situation is well controlled.

I had to put that nursery flat down to keep them from dust-bathing under the new apple trees, though. They were digging the trees up by the roots with their shenanigans.

Chickens under the apples

Speaking of apples, we have a couple of apples on the Summer Rambo, and they're pretty much ready to eat. The nice thing about this particular apple is that it's ready in August, well before the others are really fully ripe.

Summer Rambo apple

Also real close to ripe are the couple of Jonathan apples left after certain apple-loving dogs had their way with the apple trees this summer. Two apples is hardly enough to do anything, but maybe we'll have a very very small apple pie.

Jonathan apple

And this week we've been eating Asian pears. They come ripe from August until late October, and keep well on the tree. Keep in mind that in grocery stores around here organic Asian pears sell for $1.50 to $2.50 each, and you will see why having your own tree (or two) is a great thing if you love Asian pears.

This is Hosui, which is basically what you get in the grocery stores. Nice, very sweet, but it can kind of be a one-trick pear.

Hosui Asian pear

This afternoon Noel told me he likes this best: Shinseiki, which has a tartness and crisper texture to go with the sweetness. It's also a much more prolific bearer: I thinned this out heavily this year and still it's just covered in fruit. It's hard to be totally sensible about thinning fruit, no?

Shinseiki Asian pear

In more obscure fruit news, we have a second passionfruit on the "Frederick" vine:

New passionfruit

And the first one is getting very large. They're supposed to turn purple and get loose, wrinkly skins when ripe, so I guess that's a ways off.

Older passionfruit

Also, just as the farmer's markets are getting second-crop figs in, we have even more figs on the baby fig tree. I have no idea whether these will do anything or not, but it's fascinating to watch.

More figs

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posted by ayse on 08/15/08

2 Comments

What a lot of yummy fruit!

This post reminds me that I've meant to ask for a while: what stage are the quinces at? I was under the impression that last year you had quinces before this, but when I looked around at markets they told me not to look for them until September.

They really won't be ready before September (some might argue that the difference between a ripe and unripe quince is very subtle, but I try to give them all the sweetness they can get). Usually late September, actually.

Also, if you would like quince, please do not buy it; I will happily give you as much as you want from this year's harvest.

Note: We're getting pummeled with spam comments, so I've turned off the ability to use any HTML or include any links for the time being. Email with any issues.

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