Checking on the fruit trees on this sunny afternoon. The espalier were pruned some time ago. They had the 1st application of dormant spray on January 16th. The next application is scheduled for Super Bowl Sunday, February 6th. The buds are fattening up just a little bit. Once the buds break, dormant spray can no longer be applied.
My garden assistant for the afternoon was checking out the other end of the line where the plum, peach, and apple grow while I inspected the apricot, nectarine, and pear on my end. Each tree will be getting fertilized and additional compost prior to Valentine’s Day. We moved on to the only citrus tree currently producing.
The Rio Red Grapefruit tree.
The dwarf tree, planted on Valentine’s Day 2009, has produced 7 fruits this season. Farmer MacGregor and I enjoyed the 1st pick several weeks ago; but old MacGregor declared that the fruit was a wee bit too tart yet. I thought it was just right. That could be due to the fact that I’m so sweet and counteract any tartness. We’ll wait just a bit longer until more is harvested. I prefer to eat grapefruit with a spoon and never like I would eat an orange. It must be some kind of reaction with the metal of the spoon or something that makes the grapefruit more appealing to me to eat that way.
The stakes surrounding the tree will remain in place until all danger of frost has passed. Plastic sheeting is draped over the stakes to form a small greenhouse and help ward off any damage from cold weather. Other than frost dangers, citrus are fairly maintenance free here in zone 8-9.
Perhaps the next time the farmer and I enjoy a grapefruit, we can use something like this to celebrate Valentine’s Day after the trees are fed and composted. Ain’t it romantic?