After so many apples being infested with apple maggot last year, I have decided to take definitive action and have just put up three traps. Already they're grabbing nasty bugs (in other words, no recognizable beneficial bugs), but no apple maggot flies as of yet. I think they don't emerge until June, but I'm not taking any chances. I may also cover each fruit with those disposable socks that you get at the shoe stores. Sounds like a pain, but I'd only have to do it once a year, and the socks are reusable.
I've been pouring over Gaia's Garden: A Guide to Homescale Permaculture, by Toby Hemenway. Oh, the wheels are turning!
I've decided that the area in front of Thing 2's bedroom window needs to be planted to hopefully cut down on the heat that builds up right there. So I've been scouring the local nurseries for plants that will do well with unknown varieties of one climbing rose, and one huge clematis. So far I have a couple of Euphorbia polychroma, some Agastache cana 'Heather Queen', a Lewisia columbiana rupicola, a couple of Helianthemums, and some Salvia nemerosa 'East Friesland'. I'd also like to add some spring bulbs, and maybe some Cistus. And maybe a hebe or two.... And....
I'm also thinking about what to plant under the apple trees. Mr. E can't mow under them without breaking branches, so I'd like to lay down some cardboard and compost, and plant some of the things that were mentioned in Gaia. However, many of those plants are HUGE! Cardoon? It'd be taller than the trees themselves! I've ordered more books from the library, so I hope they'll help out. Any suggestions for things to plant under short apple trees whose lower branches are two feet off the ground or less?
The rest of the garden is starting to look spring-like, although it's almost May. All the snow and cold weather certainly has slowed everything up. I need to get going on more planting, and keeping the weeds down. I kept up with the weeds last summer and did a thorough weeding in the fall, and it really made a difference. I can't let all that hard work go to waste!
Even though it was "80% chance of precipitation" today, the afternoon was gorgeous, and I did manage to weed the strawberry bed and half of an herb bed. I've decided to let my parsley go to seed and make the area it's in semi-permanent. I cleared around the catnip, which our cat, Hg, is thankful for, I'm sure. He needs to leave it alone for a while or he may not have any. I lost one rosemary, so I'll need to replace that, and the thyme needs renewed. I have lots of rooted stems from the Berggarten sage, and as the plants are SIX FEET ACROSS, I think it's time to dig them up and use some of the rooted pieces. After many years of trying, I FINALLY got tarragon to winter over! Woo-hoo!
For those of you who have left comments, thank you! I just noticed them. I need to figure out how to get them emailed to me so I see them in a more timely manner. I never actually look at my web page, just the dashboard. I guess that's something I need to fix!