Clean up: prepping and planting

We’ve got some decent progress around the yard over the past few days.

The haskap bushes have been transplanted.

20190520.haskap.transplants

Getting them in was not without it’s casualties, however.

20190520.haskap.transplants.rootdamage

While digging one of the holes to transplant into, I hit some roots from the Chinese Elm. I was able to break some up and get them out, but then I hit a couple of bigger ones and discovered they were stronger than my spade!

And this was the “better” spade, without the broken handle top, I’d managed to find. *sigh*

While I was working on the haskap bushes and breaking spades, the girls were moving straw from the round bale to the section of the big garden they marked out. The location was chosen based on amount of sunlight, access to water, and distance from the house.

20190520.cleanup.big.garden.progress

You can see, on the right, one marker pushed into the soil. There was one on the other side, but the soil is so hard, it couldn’t stay upright!

In the foreground is an area with a few surviving raspberries that my mother had transplanted. They used to be where the row of trees in the background is. The trees had self seeded themselves among the raspberries, and when my mother transplanted them, she left the trees to grow for a “wind break”, splitting the garden in the process. The garden was even plowed on the far side of the trees, though I can’t imagine why. It’s too narrow an area to plant in.

Raspberries are good at sowing themselves, and as the girls were spreading the mulch, we noticed some in the area we wanted to cover – along with some self-sown maples.

20190520.cleanup.big.garden.progress.raspberries

The maples, I dug out and got rid of, but the raspberries, I kept.

To the more observant, yes, there is a maple mixed in with the raspberries in the bucket!

It actually got hot enough that we had to stop working and head inside – after I added water to the bucket of raspberry canes. When it was cooler in the evening, I finished spreading the mulch on the garden area, then transplanted the raspberry canes. While prepping the area, I finally took out those glazed bricks that you can see in one of the above photos. (Those bricks are everywhere!)

20190520.cleanup.big.garden.progress.raspberries.transplanted

While working in the area (and trying not to trip and stumble over that big plow ridge. 😦 ) I noticed what seems to be a single, solitary strawberry plant coming up! I also noticed lots of little chokecherry saplings crowding up under the main tree. I started pulling them up and discovered something.

Chokecherries spread through their roots.

It was not easy to get them out! In fact, I didn’t get all of them. I’m hoping a thick mulch will help with that. I don’t mind having more chokecherry trees, but I also want to plan where they are going to be!

After a thorough watering of transplants, it was left for a day. In the evening, they got another thorough watering before I added the mulch.

20190520.cleanup.big.garden.progress.raspberries.transplanted.mulched

There is still a lot of straw left, and we have to get that bale cleared away, so we will just make the mulched area wider until it’s all used up. Then I can finally clean up the straw that’s getting scattered all over! Once that is cleared, and I get some logs by the fire pit cut to shorter lengths, I’ll finally be able to mow the lawn.

In planning out when and where we were going to start planting and transplanting, I didn’t expect to actually start doing it for at least another year. With the haskap berries and the transplanted raspberries, we’re a bit ahead of the game plan. 🙂

The Re-Farmer

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