A few weeks back I ordered a few apple trees and a couple grape vines. The expected ship date was more than a week before we were supposed to leave on our trip. As fate would have it, the shipment arrived about an hour before we were supposed to leave.
But let me rewind a bit. Many of you have read about my ongoing orchard saga here, here, and here. This isn’t yet my third attempt, more like an addition to the second attempt. I won’t know for sure if the trees I planted this spring have made it over the winter. Anyways I have been wanting to add some trees to the orchard this fall, and had been looking at having it done, buying balled and burlapped trees and doing it myself, and buying bare root trees and doing it myself. For cost efficiency I opted for the last option, kind of. I will explain the kind of later.
I had been looking for a reputable online fruit tree retailer and Stark Bros name kept on coming up. Not only did everyone swear by the quality of their trees, but their customer service and guarantee is supposed to be excellent as well. I ordered a honeycrisp, a Stark Jon-a-red Jonathan, and a Golden Delicious, all in Semi Dwarf size. I also decided no better time than the present to order a couple grape vines so I got a Thomcord Seedless and Neptune Seedless.
I planned on leaving them in the barn while we were gone and hoping they didn’t come out of dormancy in the 50 degree heat. Luckily, and as I have mentioned before, I am very blessed in so many ways. My father told me to mark where I wanted them planted before I left in case he got around to planting them for me. So not only did he get the trees and vines in the ground, he took pictures of the process so I could use them for this post. I had three tree cages made from concrete remesh left from last fall’s attempt at an orchard, hence the ordering of three trees, so the small whips will be protected from our deer.
For those of you who have never planted a bare root plant you first dig a hole large enough to spread the roots. We normally then make a little pyramid of dirt in the hole to allow us to set the roots on and spread them out over the pyramid. Then you fill in the rest of the dirt around the plant.
So as I said, I had planned on buying the bare root trees and vines and planting them, but thankfully my dad got around to planting them first because by the time I got home this is what it looked like.
And at the time of writing this blog there is much more snow on the ground and much more frost in the ground I am sure. Digging a hole wouldn’t be fun, and spreading wouldn’t be possible because there would be chunks of frozen dirt.
Until next time.