This year I learned 2017

  • Squirrels are truly gods most miserable creatures

  • You can never order to many rootstocks

  • Dont forget to buy this years hot overstocked nursery item when the sale hits. It will likely not be available again for a few years while the nurseries are trying to hit it big on the next big thing.


This year I learned that I hate warm Februarys and cold Aprils…


I learned this year I am one year closer to retirement and that 4 years is still farther away then I hoped …


I learned that I’m getting older and more decrepit and my years in the garden are numbered


2017 taught me more love for fruit growing. The latest varieties of primocane blackberries from Arkansas were really grown right! They are doing fantastic here in Kansas. Canadian bush cherries are doing better than ever. My new love for wineberries may end badly but I’m enjoying these plants a lot right now! Autumn olive are the face of the future and once I saw the latest varieties I can see clearly they are undervalued. Aronia really are a big money maker and the profits made this year came from them. Never guessed such a bitter berry would be my #1 crop. My beloved pears let me down this year. Frost and lack of pollinators took their toll on what would have been a great crop. What I lost in fruit I gained in growth so it wound up being a great year. It was a good year overall for grafting in spite of all the wind storms. Feeling very blessed!


I learned to graft and experienced the excitement watching the bud grow leaves and then grow a stem and then the stem grow to be a branch and now in the ground growing to be a tree!

I learned to air layer and I now have two more trees and a Muscadine vine to plant.

I’ve learned that there are sooo many things to learn and lots of smart, helpful, funny, nice, and caring people here to help you do that!

I’ve learned that reading on this forum makes me spend money.



I’ve learned that I am not as strange as some family members think I am!

I’ve also found that Jaws mouse traps work much better and are easier to use than the cheapos. Several mouse traps in a cluster work better than just one.

Seed catalog hype means very little.

Plant labels made of aluminum pie plate strips and wired to the fence don’t last. They rip and blow away. Good thing I also keep a written chart of where things are planted.

I love my Twister fruit picker. It even works to pick sweet cherries.

Don’t ever underestimate the damage rodents can do.


I’ll try that picker, if it works for cherries!

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Ltilton, you need to get the picker online, and then you can buy the screw-on pole at a local big box store.


I learned not to grow mangos if you are not in a tropical environment, or have expertise in the field
because i got a mango and i was planning to grow it indoors and it died immediately
i learned that mangos do not like to have wet feet at all
if you want to grow mangos indoors please do alot of research before you do so.
Avocados look good indoors though
also some avocado leaves smell like anise
they are beautiful


I learned that deer are the spawn of Satan. I learned, don’t even think about planting a tree without putting protective fencing in place at the moment of planting. I learned that double layer fencing is needed, steel wire for strength, and 1 inch plastic or chicken wire to prevent pulling branches through the fencing. I learned that deer fences need to be at least 7 feet tall, around my trees.

I learned at least one American persimmon variety, Yates, bears here in Maritime NW, is parthenocarpic, early, and delicious, and Nikita’s Gift and Saijo do well here too, so far, but are later than Yates.

I learned Sweet Treat Pluerry is productive here, and not bothered a lot by neighborhood birds.

I learned wow, Prime Ark Freedom is amazing here.

I learned even if deer dont eat Leyland Cypress, they can destroy the young trees any way and do so with great enthusiasm.

I learned Im not going to try to dig up and move any more 15 year old fig trees, regardless of whether that one survives.

And jalapenos grow and produce extremely well here. And only one Thai pepper is needed to make an omelet into a super hot spicy dish.


I hear ya on the deer issue, you seem to have a bigger problem with them than me. I have 4ft fencing around all 26 of my 1-2 year old fruit trees, and even have smaller fencing around my smaller fruit bushes/plants. I also put various types of fencing around our veggie plots.

We had a bad case of blue tongue and EHD here in eastern Kentucky this year, and the numbers of deer harvested are way down in this part of the state. Some counties have had their lowest numbers harvested since they’ve been tracking such numbers (18 years). I hunted last month and saw no deer at all.

I’m not too tore up about it, less deer means less damage to our crops and trees. But, I’m still not going to remove my fencing!


I have learned that growing fruit is a slow learning process. Reading the many post by you has really helped me along the way. Thanks for all of your contributions. Bill


I learned (again) that I love gardening in the fall/winter; that working ouside in 40-60 degF weather suits me way better than 70-90 deg; that many things can be grown over winter with minimal protection affording fresh produce all winter. Each year I experiment with different veggies, with different degrees of protection and I’ve learned that they are more forgiving than I’d been led to believe. There is so much to recommend winter gardening. The hardest part is that seeds need be sown in August - during ‘verdant hell’. :sunglasses:


I learned that a grafting knife beveled on one side greatly improved my grafting success.


I have several such poles, I suppose they might work

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I learned tat KG pears split like a ?$&@ if they get rain at the wrong time, that good pumpkin seed will make a really big pumpkin even if you don’t really know what you are doing, that trees grow even if you don’t have time to check them every day, that grafts do better if you don’t pull the tape to see how they are doing.