going apple picking–and the hibiscus bursts onto the scene

Last evening I went out to our woods to pick apples, so David could make applesauce. This farm of 115 acres used to be part of an even bigger farm. Of our acres, David estimates 30 are now hay fields/pasture, and another 30 were long ago planted to apples, in scattered orchards. Some of the trees are very old, and huge. Some are still dominant on sunny grazed hillsides or the edges of pastures, and others now languish in the shade of tall  maples, ash, cherries, poplars, and other hardwoods. Many are younger “children” of those older trees. The variety is astonishing–all mixed together are small and large size; yellow, pink, greenish, red, and gold color; sweet and tart flavor; juicy and dry texture. When we went out blackberry picking recently we grabbed apples from various trees to find the best ones, and last night I went back out with my backpack and two canvas bags. I also brought my camera. The light (it was around 7 pm) was so beautiful.

cattails on the roadside
cattails on the roadside
Joe Pye Weed is going strong
Joe Pye Weed is going strong
evening sun shining through a willow tree
evening sun shining through a willow tree

It’s been a good year for berries of all kinds:

wild grapes on the horse pasture fence
wild grapes on the horse pasture fence
hawthorne
hawthorne
blackberries
blackberries
Some kind of black berry on a tree--chokecherry?
Some kind of black berry on a tree–chokecherry?

I picked apples from three different trees. Here’s the haul:??????????????????????????????? Tater thought it looked like too much work. He stayed and held down the porch canvas chair. Some of the garden harvest sits beside him. We had a great onion harvest this year.cat and onionsIn the flower garden, the dahlias are producing flowers faster than I can pick them, almost. The house is full of bouquets:bouquet dahlias 1??????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????The glads are also starting to bloom–very dramatic!???????????????????????????????And the hibiscus with its gigantic bright blossoms has started to bloom. We’ve had to stake it this year. ??????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????hibiscus bush
As I head back to work for another semester, I have to relax about the garden–weeds don’t all get pulled, deadheading doesn’t get done, no big projects that take all day to complete are launched. But I do hope to clear up and reburbish the southside gardens before fall. Here are the “before” photos. ??????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????Hopefully before too long I can display the “after” photos!

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2 Comments Add yours

  1. Anytime! See you at the barn tomorrow at 5. Hopefully the weather will hold…

  2. Heather Palmeter says:

    Your property sounds amazing! At the risk of sounding like I’m inviting myself over, I would love to see it sometime. Old, big, gnarled apple trees are actually my third favorite tree!

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