I haven't posted much lately because I've been very busy working on a project. In early October (2018), my community garden was gifted with 30 dwarf fruittrees. We didn't really have room for all of them, so I suggested we plant them in the "alley", a path that runs alongside the north part of the garden. It connects the street to the school playground and library, and is mainly used as a dog poopery.
The soil here is mostly sand. I wouldn't even call it sandy dirt, it's more like dirty sand. This whole area was sand dunes until the 50's. I planted the little baby trees along the north side of the alley. Then I proceeded to mulch them with wood chips, which we get for free, by the truckload. It has taken me 5 months, but I have finally covered an area about 8 feet wide and 1 city block long in a one foot deep layer of wood chips! I am quite proud of myself, being a naturally quite lazy person. I am so excited about these little trees, and I really want them to do well. The first trees to reward me have been the pluots, which are now in bloom. I am so hoping we get fruit, as this is not the best climate for fruit trees.
I'm now working my way down the south side of the alley, which has quite a few apple trees and other shrubs, like buddleia.
I plan on buying some bags of manure to top dress in April? Would that would be a good time?
Here are some pictures of when I first started, last October. I need to get some new pix.
I wrestled with reality for 36 years, and I'm happy to say I finally won out over it.
You worked hard! You are not lazy,
you just conserve your energy until you are ready to let it loose
and accomplish awesome feats like this one.
You're in 10b? I am in 10a.Too hot for apples, too cold for guavas.
Some currents do well here: Ribes sanguineum/aureum,
Douglas's Thornapple, fruiting silverberry,
and a few others. I am hoping my Lemonadeberry (Rhus family member) and salal make it.
I am thinking about a dwarf mango or Jujube, although the pot I wanted
to use has a resident that appears to have survived this winter's freeze. It may meet with an unfortunate accident.
The Goji berry came back. The taste of the fresh berries remind me more of ground cherries than dried Goji berries.
Goji plants are pricey, though. At least they are self-fertile.
The property I am planting in is too small to avoid falling fruit, so I can't really do the big pitted ones.
Tell us how this goes!
- Liz G
As a society, we devalued farming as an occupation and encouraged the best students to leave the farm for 'better' jobs in the city. We emptied America's rural counties in order to supply workers to urban factories. Michael Pollan
Looks like you're 'greening the desert' on the scale that you can given your location and resources! I think that's a great thing and your pictures show some wonderful progress. Have you considered vermicompost to help feed and nourish your lacking soil. I know very little about sandy dry regious aside from what I've read in books. I think manure would be a good thing as long as it is well seasoned. Perhaps you could get the manure now and add in some carbon to the nitrogen and try the hot compost method to make sure enough of the nitrogen has burned off by the time you use it?
Nice work, looks real good for urban plantings, I can just imagine the future when people will be climbing at that fence to get at the fruits of your labor. someone ought to give you one of those pep badges or something.
I had strawberry guava I planted and became like a hedge at last house, they are fantastic, super yummy, grow well in sand and are salt tolerant too.