Thursday, July 13, 2017
Today I visited @zendog (Walter) in Arlington, Virginia.
I had visited Walter two years prior. I was happy to discover that, since then, his plants have tripled in size.
As he has posted elsewhere, Walter was anxious to offload some of his duplicate plants to make more room for other additions, and to afford the remaining plants more space to grow.
Neverthless, I came away feeling like I had perpetrated highway robbery-- taking so many nice things from Walter.
I came bearing gifts, as I had anticipated Walter would want to spoil me rotten. I brought along some freshly-cut scionwood of the Loring peach (best-flavored peach I’ve yet tasted) for Walter to bud-graft. I also brought a flat of fresh fruit collected from several Frederick County (Md) orchards for Walter and his family to sample, including Hedelfingen cherries; Arctic Glo nectarines; Glenglo, GaLa, and Snow Prince peaches; and the best batch of Shiro plums I’ve ever tried.
Walter let me sample his home-grown Centennial apples. The sun and humidity was pushing the heat index to 106 degrees, so it was refreshing to taste a juicy apple.
Walter dug up some extra strawberry runners for me to take. I came prepared. I brought some pots pre-filled with soil. We immediately potted up the transplants and watered them in. Walter gave me two of the cultivars widely acclaimed as among the best strawberries for the Eastern U.S… Earliglo and Mara de Bois.
We also “traded” some figs. By “traded,” I mean: I gave Walter a modest-sized newly-rooted cutting of Hardy Chicago, and he generously showered me with larger-sized trees of Celeste, Black Bethlehem, Briguglio, and a local strain of Brown Turkey. I sheepishly offered to send Walter some cuttings of Battaglia Green next winter, and promised to invite him to visit my property someday soon.
Walter gifted me some robust pomegranate trees, including the resilient Salavatski, the soft-seeded Vkusnyi, and the dwarf variety Hydranar Goulosha.
Walter let me snap a pic of the two of us in order to gratify my vanity. Here we are in front of his in-ground Salavatski (survivor of two bad winters and frosty springs). Notice the clean fruit dangling like an ornament in between us:
Thanks, Walter! I really appreciate your generosity and hospitality.