Orchard Weekend 2009

sharon and roz plant a maple

The third annual Five Islands Orchard Weekend took place May 9/10, and was well attended by a large and enthusiastic crew.  Brandon and Sharon, Roz, Eric, Jonah, and Ken came up from Boston Friday night, and Eerik and Kristen joined us Saturday, along with Chrissy from Dartmouth, who brought her two very entertaining pups.  My folks also pitched in, and my grandparents observed and provided encouragement.  The weather cooperated for the most part, and all the major objectives were achieved.  The last apple trees from the nursery bed were planted in the orchard proper, along with the two cherry trees from year one,  and around five new apple trees from Fedco, including the intriguing Redfield and the amazing Wickson.  We also transplanted the Cornell high octane sugar maples from the nursery bed to their final homes along the stone wall leading down to the cove, in the spaces we’ve been clearing over the last two winters.  We also temporarily planted some new Black Walnut and Basswood saplings in the orchard, as well as three hazlenut bushes in a new nuts-and-berries bed out behind the upper cabin.  The maples and hazlenuts were fenced in, and the attachment of the plastic deer netting to the main orchard fence was upgraded on about a third of the perimeter – more to come.  Finally, Brandon enthusiastically led a crew to dig a ditch and place a small culvert under the orchard path to dry out an area that has been annoyingly wet in spring weather since we started the project, in the process getting fantastically dirty and looking as happy as the proverbial pig in… mud.

All in all, it was a great weekend, and a huge amount got done.  Thanks again to everybody who pitched in!  The apple trees are in bloom and Cider Year 5 is less than 6 months away!

Photos courtesy of Brandon are at: http://www.flickr.com/photos/pingswept/sets/72157617878385781/


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