Apple Trees update 2020

You may remember we sprouted some apple seeds in 2014 …

And they grew and grew and grew 😀

and grew 😀

And look at them now! (6ft gardener included for scale)

This one is the tallest and would be much taller but we cut it back each winter to keep it manageable.

***

This one is the most flourishing because it hasn’t suffered with aphids like the others have.

***

This one is making a comeback after ant and aphid infestations, I’ll tell you why in a minute.

***

And this little fella has struggled from the get-go but he’s hanging in there thanks to …

Yay!  The ladybirds have arrived!  And now there’s not an aphid to be seen! 😀

Our apple trees are over six years old – how time flies!

Maybe in another four we’ll get some apples 😀

Have a great day!

 

Look at our apple trees now!

Remember we planted some sprouted apple seeds nearly five and a half years ago? I can’t believe it’s been over five years!  Anyway, look at them now!  In our last update, three years ago, they were still in pots, but not long after that we planted them in the chickens’ area of the garden where my husband works.  We thought they’d make the chickens’ patch more interesting and give them some shade in the summer.  They grew at different rates, maybe because they’re different types of apples but also because a couple of them have been plagued with ants farming aphids on them.  The little one at the back of the photo (above) was in a really bad way last year because it was smothered in greenfly so I soaked some soapnuts in a bottle of water and doused them liberally with it and this year it’s really bounced back.  Doesn’t seem a very vegan thing to do though does it?  But I want to protect the trees.  This year the ants are still there and the greenfly are back, though not in such great numbers yet.  I was hoping some ladybirds might help out if I left things alone but so far I’ve only seen one so I’m not really sure the best course of action.

Any natural suggestions would be greatly appreciated 🙂

This one is the strongest this year – isn’t it marvellous?  A nice bit of shade for the chicks and, five years in, we’re half way to getting some apples.  Greenfly permitting 😉

Growing your own trees – it’s a rollercoaster of joy and apprehension! ❤

The Circle of Life

Make your own compost 🙂

Save all your raw fruit and vegetable peelings, apple cores, tea bags, soapnut shells, etc etc

and take them outside to your compost bin (any container will do but make sure it’s got drainage holes in the bottom)

Toss your ‘green waste’ in there, (ie raw fruit & veg waste)

but also add some ‘brown waste’ (such as brown paper, black and white printed paper like newspapers or old paperback pages (no colour print), dead leaves) every so often otherwise you’ll end up with a wet soggy, stinky mess.  You want about 2 parts ‘green’ to 1 part ‘brown’ according to the science 🙂

Then eventually it will rot down to something moist and earthy, just teaming with baby earthworms (I don’t know where they came from) and ready to host your new plants.  Don’t ask me how long this took, I didn’t time it, but it was probably about a year.  We just eventually thought it looked composty and tipped it out of the bin and there you have it.  Click here if you want advice from experts 😀

Now you can pot it …

… sow some seeds in it, …

… and in a few days (this is less than 2 weeks later) your old vegetables will be providing you with new vegetables 🙂

I’d better thin these 😉

*******************************************

vegan, vegetarian, recycling, home-grown, plant-food, plant-based, health, gardening, growing

It’s time to look at the apple trees

Remember, way back in February 2014, we planted some apple seeds?

and they grew (well some of them died, but some of them grew)

And we checked in on them in 2015 and again in 2016 and they just kept on growing!

So we planted them outside in the ground.  We thought the chickens might like them for shade when they’re bigger, but while they’re still young we put some wood around them to keep the girls from scratching the earth off their roots.  There’s four in here (I wonder if you’ll be able to spot them all), and two of them are taller than me!  The 8 to 10 years wikihow said we’d have to wait for fruit seemed like a long time, but it’s been 3 years already and time’s just flying 😀

NB this is not my garden 🙂 but luckily we were able to plant them here.  So, if you don’t have anywhere of your own to plant them, look for a suitable spot on public property where they won’t get hacked down by farm machinery and then everyone can enjoy them.  Check out the Scottish Forest Gardener to see how he successfully plants trees on council property 🙂

Plant trees!  You know it makes sense 😉

 

Home Grown Apple Trees – Look at them now!

apple trees from seed

Remember a couple of years ago we started growing apple trees from seed?

FLASH BACK: this is how they looked in February 2014

Well, we’ve kept on with it, sprouting seed after seed, growing seedling after seedling, and we have quite a few in different sized pots around the garden.  Some of them didn’t make it, sadly, but that’s the way it goes, and we just keep on going.  (I say ‘we’ but really it’s Miranda who does all the work.  I help with watering 😉 )

apple trees from seed

If you look over here you will see what our oldest ones looked like a year ago – nice strong, woody stems, but still tiny.

But now the tallest one is about four feet tall!  I’ve photographed it next to a garden chair to give you some idea of scale:

apple trees grown from seed

How fantastic is that?!!!

It seems like no time since we sprouted those first seeds.

We have planted a few in the wild and intend to keep doing that, inconspicuously near public footpaths, in the hope of providing free food for the future, but most of them are still in pots for now.

apple trees from seed

We love our little trees 😀

If you want to do this yourself, go to the original post to see how 🙂

Back down to earth

Click here for the story so far 😉

1 allotment

2 allotment

3 allotment

4 allotment

5 allotment

6 allotment

7 allotment

8 allotment

If you fancy growing your own delicious organic fruits and vegetables but you don’t have a garden, why not apply for an allotment?  Click here to find out how.

It’s true that there are sometimes long waiting lists but not always. We were very lucky that our village was just setting up new allotments and we were able to get one within a few months of moving there. And there are still a few plots available now.

So go on, find out what’s available in your area – the National Allotment Society will give you all the info you need – and do something that’ll get you out in the fresh air and sunshine for a good dose of vitamin D and some healthy exercise, while at the same time providing you with quality, organic vegetables that are good for you and the earth 😀

Apple Trees Revisited

Remember we decided to grow our own apple trees from seed?

Travel back in time to February 2014 to see how our apple trees began 🙂

They dropped all their leaves in the winter (we actually thought one of them had died and were going to plant something else in the pot) but then spring came and they came back with gusto!  They’ve got beautiful new leaves and strong woody stems.  Look at them now:

DSCN3675

DSCN3676

DSCN3677

DSCN3679

And here’s some new babies we’ve just got started (there are so many apples in our future 😀 ):

DSCN3680

And look at them in May 2016!

The Hungry Compost Bin

compost bin

The compost bin was hungry

And it wanted something new.

It’d reduced old fruit and lettuce leaves

To gloopy, slimy goo.

“Enough with all the green waste,

For now I’ve had enough.

I need something dry and brown

Like paper and card and stuff!”

So strips of card were fed to it

And more and more and more,

‘Til finally an old paperback

Was swallowed whole and raw.

paperback swallowed whole

Look what I’ve found!

grow your own trees

Remember when we had a go at growing our own apple trees from seed? (They’re still going strong  by the way).  Well, I’ve just come across this brilliant site which shows you, step by step, how to grow all sorts of different trees from seeds you’ve collected yourself!

grow your own trees

I can’t wait to have a go!

grow your own trees

It just makes you want to plant stuff!

Ladybird Ladybird

Ladybirds are good for the garden as they will eat the insects that hurt your plants.  A ladybird house, as well as planting things they like (like dandelion and fennel), will encourage ladybirds to stay in your garden because it provides them with a safe roosting place during cold and frosty nights in early spring and a safe place in which to hibernate in winter.

So why not make one?

how to build a ladybird house

Put your bug house under a shrub or against a wall where it is warm and sheltered but not hot.

bamboo ladybird house

And if you’re feeling a bit more ambitious look at this! Amazing!

Don’t use chemicals in your garden, encourage nature to do the work for you 🙂