Backyard Orchards, chronicling, musing and more

I have both, and hope to get my first crop from them next year!


@mamuang Tippy, nest spring I might have to graft a Vision to my French Plum that I got from Trees of Antiquity this year. I had a list of candidate varieties like Bavay’s Green Gage and Bluebyrd, but your experience with Vision inspires me to bump it up to the top of the list.


Bavay is a dud for me this year. I know many people love it. I wish we had a dry year for it. So far, so bland.


Wrapping up my watermelons this year. It is one of the plants that loves water/rain the we have had.

7 plants, 26 melons. The smallest one was 22 lbs and the biggest one was 42 lbs.

This was last weekend. All Charleston Gray.

This was two days ago. We only grow Charleston Gray, Crimson Sweet, and Georgia Rattlesnake. All are sweet with crisp texture.

Charleston Gray is the most productive.
Crimson Sweet is relatively productive.
Georgia Rattlesnake is not productive but creates huge melons, each weighs over 30 lbs.

@galinas Hope you will try Charleston Gray next year.


Hard to beat Chrarleston Gray for home grown melons.
They come out with new named melons every year, but
I doubt many of them equal this one.


Yesterday morning, I woke up with 4 empty ziplock bags on the ground. Roxbury Russet nowhere to be found. I was very mad at a opossum upping its game. Four apples in one night!!

I set up a trap but caught nothing, not even my resident skunk.

A few minutes ago, I looked out the window. My nightmare came true.

Not just one. A pair of them. This year, I have had chipmunks, squirrels, birds, rabbits, an opossum and now deer going after my fruit. This is a small backyard in a densely populated area of a town. I almost have it all but have not seen raccoons (yet).

I also want to apologize to the opossum for my misplaced anger and swearing.


Two of my Korean Giant were on the ground, courtesy of a squirrel (judging from bite marks on the stems. This year, my KG are mostly large because it is a “light” year, not many fruit so they grow large.
This one is about a lb.

It is not quite ripe. Seeds, the bottom ends are still pale. Fully ripened KG pears will have completely dark brown/black seeds.

It tasted alright, still was a bit starchy. The flesh should be a bit more translucent when fully ripe.

I think it should be able to pick them in about 1-2 weeks.

@PharmerDrewee @hambone - have your picked yours?


Look!! Who just showed up.

Turkeys don’t bother me. They don’t do damage to my garden and orchard.


I think you should start a children’s zoo business :joy:


You forgot birds and fox, two of my biggest issues with outdoor fruit. I think some feel that my greenhouse is overkill. But guess what, it solves all those issues plus so many other things: frost, freezes, hail, wind, and most insect and disease issues. All I’ve sprayed this year is hort oil. Next year I’m going to switch to wettable sulfur. Mostly to see how that works against spider mites. Oil works fine but sulfur would control powdery mildew on grapes when I get them going.


I heard sulfur can injure figs, so be careful.

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Sulfur plus oil too close together can injure figs and probably lots of other things. I’ve never injured anything with oil. I’ll switch back to it if necessary.


I mentioned birds but forgot about foxes. We have had small red foxes once in a while. I pray for them to visit my yard. They could help me getting rid of chipmunks and squirrels.

Some birds are nasty. They ate and pecked even small green fruit.

If I want to include more nasties, wasps and yellow jackets are at many of my ripening fruit now!!


The GH also controls wasp and stink bugs. The later is a big issue on outdoor nectarines. I have a few of both in the GH. But not enough to cause issues. Wasps seem lost inside and mostly just bang into the walls.

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Its a brilliant solution.

You have a zoo!!!


I’ll do another seed check today. They’re hanging tight to the stem and no hornets on them so far, so that suggests not quite ready but I’ll check.

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Mine are starting to become edible. They’ll get sweeter in another week but the seeds are dark. I stopped picking fruit the past week because it has been so cool and cloudy. Not much sugar being generated.


A greenhouse would be nice. If we want one that meet our need, we have to find a new place to live with a larger piece of land. Land in MA is very expensive. So, a greenhouse like yours is not possible right now.


@mrsg47 and @Ahmad
Like a zoo indeed. Neighbors do not grow fruit trees so my backyard is the only attraction.:weary: