July 15, 2014
A Little Of My Farm In Mid-July
It's been a while since I showed you what's been going on around the farm. At this time of year, the crew is working hard keeping the gardens looking weed-free and tidy. It's also the time when the berry crop needs picking, a job that stretches for a few weeks. I have plenty of berries to share with family and friends. I also love making jams, jellies, pies, crisps, and many other desserts, as well as eating out of hand.
1 Even though all of the apple trees on the farm had been expertly pruned during the winter, the apple trees trained as espaliers had become extremely overgrown and needed to be trimmed back.
2 Chhewang has become a very good pruner and I asked him to perform this task.
3 I wanted all of the overgrown foliage trimmed away, exposing the fruit so it can ripen properly.
4 You can see the difference of before, on the right and after, on the left.
5 Another shot of the tremendous growth spurt
6 And a final shot of the nicely pruned apple trees
7 I designed this long pergola to follow the curve of the drive. Mixed purple clematis have been trained to grow up the granite posts and the border is filled with many plants, primarily nepeta, also known as cat mint.
8 Several years ago, I had this shade pergola built behind the main greenhouse, adjacent to the headhouse.
9 Many kinds of ferns and other shade-loving tropical and semi-tropical plants spend the warm months beneath this pergola.
10 This unusual plant is a carnivorous Nepenthes.
11 These plants are popularly known as tropical pitcher plants, or monkey cups. They grow naturally in the tropical regions of Asia, predominantly Thailand, Malaysia, Philippines, Indonesia, Singapore, and New Guinea.
12 The pitcher is a trap that contains a fluid of the plant's own production, which may be watery or syrupy, and is used to drown the prey. Once the prey crawls in, it rarely escapes.
13 The most frequent prey for these pitchers are ants and other insects and occasionally small lizards.
14 Chhiring was busy at work weeding and dead-heading in the cutting garden. He protects himself from the sun by wearing a humorous, but practical umbrella hat.
15 Many kinds of lilies have been blooming in the flower garden. They are a combination of trumpet, Oriental, Asiatic, and Orienpet lilies.
16 These exquisite lilies are extremely fragrant.
17 A wonderful shade of pink
18 These very healthy lavender plants were grown from seed that my father collected many years ago. I had found a vial with a label dated 1963 in his handwriting. Ryan, my gardener, planted the seeds last year and had tremendous success.
19 Lavender is a favorite plant for honeybees.
20 My beehives are located just outside the cutting garden.
21 On our last inspection, the hives were loaded with gorgeous honey!
22 The blueberry pergola is located on the other side of the cutting garden.
23 The fruit is beginning to ripen. The varieties I grow are Bluegold, Chandler, Darrow, Jersey, and Patriot.
24 Did you know that blueberries are the most popular berry for eating after strawberries?
25 Blueberries are high in fiber and have one of the highest antioxidant capacities among all fruits, vegetables, spices, and seasonings.