Moving and Planting Trees

Big day today. We rearranged trees in the orchard, which is like the beginning of a bad farming joke but this was no joke.

I went to a conference for the extended Presidents' Day weekend, leaving behind a box with my new Asian pears waiting to be planted. I wanted to get to it earlier but things just did not come together to make that happen. Which is to say that we spent most of the Sunday after we chipped up the brush pile lying around feeling old and sore.

While I was away, Noel removed the stump of the dead Buddleia, and today it was past time to plant the new trees. As a reminder of why we are doing this, the old Asian pears are in the way of the renovation work and will have to be removed -- they're just too big to transplant. Asian pears come into fruit quickly so replacement made more sense than repatriation, anyway.

New asian pears

We made quick work of planting them, digging the hole and supplementing the soil with compost from the chicken yard (which also needs my attention). The new trees, from the left, clockwise, are: Tsu Li, Shinsui, Kikisui, Atago.

Shinsui is one of the varieties we have now. The other three are new to us.

Then we took on the apricot. It is also in the way of the renovation; not actually in the footprint of the work but close enough that it would be a bad place to have a tree. So we decided to try moving it since it took forever to produce fruit and it is still pretty small.

Digging out the apricot

It took us a couple of hours to dig it out. I gave it a serious root pruning in the process. All that grassy stuff, by the way, is this wild onion I planted that has gone mad in the most delightful way, so both of us now reek of raw onion.

Moving the apricot

We humped the tree into the wheelbarrow and carted it across the yard, where Noel had dug out the old stump of the sour cherry that died. The hole only needed a little enlarging to fit the apricot, and that worked reasonably well.

Apricot in its new home

There it is. It has buds but neither flowers nor leaves, so it remains to be seen whether it will be at all happy with what just happened to it, but this is the best chance it has of surviving the work.

Raintree Nursery, where I got the new Asian pears, always gives you freebies with bare-root trees, and I have some packages with raspberries and strawberries to plant tomorrow, but this was pretty good for today. I also took the last photos that the city requires for the planning process, and our drawings will go in for that next week. About two weeks later than I wanted them to, but we're still fine for timing.

posted by ayse on 02/21/15


Those Asian pears look very close together. Are they supposed to form one "tree"?

For some reason when I go to, I get to the post previous to this. It doesn't show a next link either. I only got to this moving trees post because I saw your post on facebook with archives in the url. Once I get to a post with archives in the url, the Next/Prev stuff is there.

That's strange. Maybe your ISP does caching of pages that is interfering with the update. The homepage is written to never give a "next" link (because it's the most recent post), but if they don't show the most recent homepage for some reason I can't fix that. We've had this problem with our work homepage recently, and it's super frustrating.

Also, yes, the trees are planted to grow as one group. I got them with the same rootstock so they won't compete each other out, and they will be pruned out from the center of the group. That's how most of our fruit trees are planted and it is terrific for adding variety without taking up too much space.

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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