more poking around the yard, more things in bloom. we have started defining beds, pruning back some bushes, and mapping the yard, but beyond that we have been trying to be low key with what we do, mostly observing what is happening.
in my poking about the yard i’ve had some pretty delightful discoveries.
this appears to be a flowering crab of some sort. i’m not really into ornamentals especially when i could have lovely apple blossoms on an actual fruit tree instead. next to the crab is this ornamental pear. my plan is to collect scion wood in the winter and graft on to these trees some edible apples and pears. if it doesn’t work out, it’s really no loss, and if it does, i’ve got apples and pears. not really in the location that i would like, but it does gain me several years of establishing a tree, and increases the speed at which they will bear.
in the back yard i’ve also discovered this mixed blessing stinging nettle. i’ve come to love stinging nettle, it’s great in compost teas, in soups in the spring, and it gets lots of use as a tea especially when allergies get to be too much. this year’s foraging trip didn’t go so well, and i was a bit surprised to see the nettles coming up in the yard. i trimmed them and S quickly dried them for tea. of course they are also a pain in the ass, they have a tendency to spread, and if you are not paying much attention they can remind you of their presence for some time to come though their painful sting.
in the category of things i really didn’t want to see growing in the garden was this guy:garlic mustard. i know, i know they make some tasty pesto first thing in the spring, but man are they a pain in the ass. i’ve always felt like i was a pretty good karmic gardener, having now improved the soil for others at many rental houses and community gardens, so i’ve been wondering what i’ve done to deserve this. to add insult to injury i’ve also found a pretty heavy presence of bindweed and quackgrass in the yard. i’m forced to deal with my most hated weeds in this yard. i just hope i can keep them from overrunning me.