Sunday, April 17, 2011

Compost & mulch in the orchard

Things are really greening up around here. It’s so pretty with all the new leaves coming out on the trees. Spring is a neat time of year. Around here it’s also a wet time of year. We received nearly five inches of rain during the last week. The ground is saturated, but it’ll dry out before too long.

There are a lot of jobs that need done around the farm during Spring. I keep plugging away at the things that need done. Last week before some of the rain, we composted all of the blueberry bushes and mulched them with wood chips. I worked the compost into the soil around each bush before putting the mulch around them.

Today, I worked in the orchard. Last year I didn’t give the fruit trees the attention they needed. With plenty of compost available this year, I didn’t want to neglect them again. I was going to till around each tree, but the pull rope on the tiller broke. I’m going to have to fix that and a couple of other things on it tomorrow or the next day.

So, instead of using the tiller, I used a grub how and worked in a circle around each tree, working up the soil out to the drip line of each tree (as far out as the branches extend). There were 14 trees, I think (I forgot to count to make sure). Once I had the ground worked up around all of the trees, I mowed between the trees with the bush hog. 010Then, I hauled compost to them. I put half a loader scoop at the base of each tree.

I used my grape hoe to spread out the compost. It ended up being 4 or 5 inches deep around each tree. Then, it was time to mulch them. I put a full loader scoop of wood chips at each tree and spread it out beyond the composted area for each one. A few of the trees didn’t need a full scoop of mulch. So, 008I put the extra around the little hazelnut trees I set out a few weeks ago and a little bit around the cherry bushes.

The orchard looks nice and neat now, and I hope the compost gives the trees a nutritional boost. The wood chips will keep the weeds down and will provide nutrients as the break down over the next year or so.



Great post, thanks for sharing. Love your pictures.

Blacksmith Chase

Your family is doing EXACTLY what my family is about to redo. Keep up the good work, and MOST IMPORTANTLY KEEP the FAITH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! God Bless.

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