Stormy sunset over the orchard, show us your orchard pics!

valgor(4b, WI)June 3, 2014

Snapped this photo in the orchard last night and got me thinking there have to be some great shots out there, so lets see them.
I brightened the foreground here so it can be seen a little better, but otherwise the colors are as they were, so minimal photo shopping please ;)

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Canaletto! Beautiful and thanks! Mrs. G

    Bookmark   June 3, 2014 at 9:33PM
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valgor(4b, WI)

Yes, I wish I could paint like that. My wife is the painter, maybe I will have her do a replica.

    Bookmark   June 3, 2014 at 10:06PM
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valgor, very nice setting!

I have a backyard orchard, which offers areas of focus and interest rather than large sweeping vistas. And thankfully there is always something of interest year round. Here is a peach tree in bloom after an early morning spring rain:

    Bookmark   June 3, 2014 at 11:58PM
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valgor(4b, WI)

You are right, an orchard doesn't have to be a large planting, it is what you want it to be. I am envious of your peach blossoms, a sight I have not yet seen in my own orchard, very nice :)

    Bookmark   June 4, 2014 at 5:31AM
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bob_z6(6b/7a SW CT)

Here's a semi-aerial view of mine from my 2nd floor deck. The trees in the middle are white with Surround.

    Bookmark   June 4, 2014 at 10:53PM
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I took this photo of my orchard this morning.

    Bookmark   June 5, 2014 at 2:49PM
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valgor(4b, WI)

Bob, you look like a very organized and busy guy, there is lots going on in your orchard and looks like you are getting the most out of every inch.

Camp10, looks like you like to mow too. trees are lookn nice.

    Bookmark   June 5, 2014 at 7:57PM
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bob_z6(6b/7a SW CT)

Valgor- thanks, but while I'm busy trying to use every inch, I can't claim to be organized. If you saw the 90-100 potted trees and bushes spread out haphazardly, you wouldn't say that. I kept most of them just out of the pic... :)

I'm a bit envious of all the space you and Camp10 have to spread out in. Maybe someday when I retire I can get that much space. Until then, I'm lucky to have as much as I do- land prices are sky-high in this area.

    Bookmark   June 6, 2014 at 9:00PM
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valgor(4b, WI)

Bob, I am very fortunate to have been born into a family that has always lived in the country. My grandparents homesteaded this acreage (80) and my dad grew up in the dirt floor shack fifty yards from where my house is. My brother bought the land from grandma some years back and i got my pick of the acreage. what you see is only about an acre and a half, but the only open acreage on the property (some of it i cleared out a bit.)

I started out with the idea of a few apple trees, and like all my other hair-brained schemes, it got a bit out of hand, much to my wife's chagrin. Now much of my time is dedicated to mowing, watering, mulching, fertilizing, pruning, tying down, spraying, and fencing. That being said i love almost every moment of it, though I have yet to get a decent return on fruit, and I don't have as much time to take the family out fishing as i would like. So there is much to be said for having your space limited for you! Watcha got in all those pots?

    Bookmark   June 6, 2014 at 9:57PM
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bob_z6(6b/7a SW CT)

Valgor, I like the idea of a family setting down roots in a place for generations. It doesn't seem to happen much now. My great-grandparents bought a house with an acre+ of land in the middle of a CT city and it stayed in the family for about 100 years. One of my great uncles was born and died in that house (~80 years later). He kept most of the acre growing all sorts of fruits and vegetables, right to the end. I was still young at the time, but always recall my visits fondly. It's a bit of an inspiration for what I've done in my yard.

The pots (more than half are fabric pots) have all sorts of fruit trees and berry bushes. Many are trees that I had concerns about in my climate, either due to disease (cherry, pluot, rot-susceptible peaches) or hardiness (figs, persimmons, and southern highbush blueberries). I also have some which I figured that potting it would keep it manageable in size (mulberry in particular). Others, are just newly propagated cuttings from various plants I am already growing (hardy kiwi, gooseberry, currant, strawberry, etc). But, growing things in pots is quite a bit of work due to the continuous watering and hasn't been all that productive. So, I am gradually decreasing how many I have (a bit at least), by planting them when I find a spot, or giving them to family.

    Bookmark   June 6, 2014 at 10:44PM
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valgor(4b, WI)

Family is a big deal for us. When times get rough, its pretty much all we have. One reason for my orchard is to have another asset for my kids when i am no longer around. Also it will be a good way to teach them the value of working to provide something for your family. Not enough practical skills being taught in schools these days.

Have you considered running drip irrigation, even for your potted plants? I have been thinking about it for a while, and am expecting delivery of my order of tubing and drip emitters, etc, on Monday. I am excited by how much time it will save me, and it is actually quite inexpensive. It was about $115 for 500 ft of line, plus drip emitters and caps, and other assorted bits, enough to do half my trees and 'nanking' bush cherries.
Wish i lived close enough to lighten your burden:) i have enough projects anyways.

    Bookmark   June 6, 2014 at 11:24PM
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bob_z6(6b/7a SW CT)

When I first started, I tried drip irrigation (with the hoses which seep, rather than have emitters) and while it worked OK, I never automated it. It doesn't usually get that dry here, so as long as I keep the in-ground trees well mulched with wood-chips, I only need to water a few times in the summer. It's easier to go around with the hose, than to get everything laid down, then mow around it.

But, you make a good point. Maybe I should revisit drip irrigation for the potted plants. They need it far more often- as frequently as every 2-3 days during the summer.

    Bookmark   June 7, 2014 at 12:14AM
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Taken this morning after mowing the grass. All trees planted last spring.

    Bookmark   June 7, 2014 at 12:46AM
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valgor(4b, WI)

wine-maker, there isn't much prettier than seeing those clean mow lines in the grass on long runs and healthy green leafs on all those trees. What will you do with all that fruit?-besides making wine, of course. I still haven't figured out what I will do with mine (whenever I get it), besides cider and giving loads of it away to family and friends.

Bob, currently I am in the process of mulching whole rows. that will make it way easier to lay down tubing without the worry of mowing over it or burying it. I am in Wisconsin, so I will have to pack it away every fall and roll it out every spring (at minus 30 plastic tubing is extremely brittle.)
It won't be fully automated, instead I will put a post at the end of each row with a hose connection and a splitter before that so I can turn on four rows at the same time. With 2gph emitters that's about the max I can run anyways. Otherwise it takes me about 4 hours to water everything by hand.
For some reason I seem to be an advocate of doing things the hard way, maybe to convince myself I'm not lazy. I am 33, but my back is telling me I better start finding easier ways.

    Bookmark   June 7, 2014 at 7:55AM
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bob_z6(6b/7a SW CT)

Wow- if it took me 4 hours every time, I would be looking for an easier way too. You are never too young to look for better ways to do things.

    Bookmark   June 7, 2014 at 10:58AM
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Konrad___far_north(3..just outside of Edmonton)

Nice showing!
Wine maker...are you spraying inside these caches? How do you get in?

This from last night...

    Bookmark   June 7, 2014 at 6:05PM
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valgor(4b, WI)

konrad, that would make a great follow up picture too, 3 or 4 months from now. nice shot.

    Bookmark   June 7, 2014 at 7:30PM
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Great shot Konrad. Nice focus in the foreground, and yet the background is still quite clear. Great composition and depth of field in that photo.

    Bookmark   June 7, 2014 at 7:35PM
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Konrad___far_north(3..just outside of Edmonton)

Thank you all!
I wasn't trying too hard....was on the ladder pulling some red wonder blossoms for breeding, using my little pocket camera.

    Bookmark   June 8, 2014 at 1:02AM
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Valgor, most of the fruit will end up being fermented. Some by myself, some by my friends and any excess fruit beyond that I hope to sell off to other winemakers. I'm looking into getting a food-prep area approved in my house by the state so that I can process and freeze the fruit before selling (required in PA).

Konrad, yes, I am spraying the trees inside the cages. They do not really seem to complicate the task of spraying at all. As far as getting into the cage to work on the trees, I only fastened one end of the fencing material to the T-post. The other end I cut so that the end has it has little fingers sticking out. I just bend one or two of those fingers into the fixed end to hold the cage closed. I just lift and pull and they open right up. It's a little bit of a hassle, but without them the deer would be all over them. I'm figuring by the end of their fourth year or so, I can remove them and what ever happens, happens.

    Bookmark   June 8, 2014 at 12:23PM
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olpea(zone 6 KS)

I finally got the orchard mowed and decided to take a pic yesterday. Here are a couple peach rows. Not as pretty as the above pics, but the orchard is in decent shape for the shape it's in.

Sunny weather yesterday. Raining today.

This post was edited by olpea on Thu, Jun 19, 14 at 16:51

    Bookmark   June 19, 2014 at 4:49PM
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Here is part of my 50'x100' backyard orchard, There is some deer damage, so some of the trees aren't as full as they should be.

    Bookmark   June 19, 2014 at 11:04PM
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Nov., 2013 photo of a 600-tree apple orchard planted spring of 2013 in Uganda, East Africa, mown by hand over a two-week period.

    Bookmark   June 20, 2014 at 8:45PM
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