24 November, 2011

I hate gardening.

Well, not really. What I hate is birds. Birds helping themselves to my almost-but-not-quite-yet-time-to-put-the-bird-netting-up cherries.


I have been eagerly watching my cherries slowly blushing and turning red. After all the rain we have had of late I have been worried about the tree dropping the fruit, but it seemed as though the fruit had made it through and was just about getting near ready.

I was thinking to myself yesterday while meandering around the garden after work, picking the lone artichoke (all the others are not quite ready yet) and trying to figure out what the hell I was going to make for dinner with one artichoke when I though "Note to self; must net the cherry this weekend..."

But when I got home from work today, there was this...

Not a single cherry was left! No wonder the botanical name for cherries is Prunus avium. Bloody birds! If only they could have waited one more damn day. I was so looking forward to those cherries! The tree is a Stella cherry and the first one I bought, which had lived for two years in a pot and last year had produced its first 6 cherries. They were delicious! I only shared one of those first few cherries, and in hindsight thinking of how good they were I'm amazed at my generosity. Maybe this is cherry karma?? Share or the birds will take them all.

Next year I will be prepared. This year I bought an additional 6 cherry trees which brings the grand total of cherries to 8; 6 sweet cherries (Stella, Simone, Early Burlat, Napoleon, Regina and Merchant) and 2 sour cherries (Morello and Kentish). The sweet cherries, with the exception of Stella, are spread around the front and back yards and are being trained in the spanish bush method which basically means in the first year you cut the tree back to 30cm above the graft, and then each year after you cut back each branch to 30cms. This hopefully encourages the plant to develop a network of branches so by the end of a few years you have a cherry 'bush' about 2m high, rather than a tree. This also hopefully means easier picking, assuming of course you get any fruit at all. The sour cherries are both being espaliered in an informal fan type shape against brick walls of the house and garage. But next year come the first hint of any colour even approaching red on these trees will be netted immediately!

Thank god for the sour cherries; it's the only one I have left.

And I'm determined the birds arent getting this one!!!

1 comment:

  1. I must confess that when I first read this post, I had flashbacks to Spring 2015 when all three of my new sweet cherry trees had a handful of cherries on them. I was so excited, especially as I finally saw the cherries turn from green to bright red. 'Not much longer,' I thought. Stupidly I didn't think to net them as they weren't yet nearly ripe (in my opinion at least), and up to that point the birds had left them alone.

    Then I was pottering in my garden and noticed that one of the trees no longer had the bright red cherries hanging proudly; I checked the other two - also bare. Not even the cherry stems were left.

    I was gutted, thinking at first that it had been birds. My mother suggested it may have been a possum though. Whatever it was, I've vowed it shan't have any of my cherries this year! First sign of fruit and I'll be netting them.