Raspberry Partial

I’ve often told people who are envious of my raspberry patch (which is modest at best, but produces faithfully each season) that a raspberry bush was literally the first thing I planted in my yard. We moved into our newly-built home about 15 years ago and spent two years setting the landscaping foundations that would eventually be our (mostly) finished backyard. I didnt have many rules, but one of the few that I set down as I started planning, planting and pruning was that whenever possible I wanted fruit-bearing plants to occupy the garden and beds.

Papers Please

A co-worker alerted me to a simple tip to recycle and re-purpose newspaper and advertisements that land in the mailbox as garden weed blockers. During the pandemic, the absence of flyer advertising has been notable as anyone who knows this trick will instead be on their hands and knees plucking weeds by hand this year. Spreading out old newspapers or flyers onto the ground around the sprouting vegetables blocks even some of the more aggressive weeds from poking through. A little topsoil to hold the papers down and every page is a couple fewer square feet of weeds to pull...

Modern Victory

During the World Wars of the 20th century, history reminds us that ordinary people were encouraged to plant vegetables in their gardens in an effort to bolster morale and supplement food shortages. To my knowledge it has not been specifically recommended by local governments to do that sort of thing during the pandemic, but the increase in backyard suburban gardening during the lockdown has likely been a reflection of not only extra free time by millions of people sheltering in their homes, but also a bit of that victory garden spirit.

Garden Update, Part 2

May long weekend both seems to have come early this year and also taken forever to arrive.

Having extended my stay-at-home vacation from that work-from-home drudgery, I afforded myself an extra day to tackle the summer-is-looming projects that will help to shape the garden into a backyard oasis for the season. As we will not be going very far for the next few months, this seems more important than ever.