Pruning blackberries

I've been pruning the blackberries for the upcoming berry season. I'll try and put up some pics tomorrow, though I may not have any before pictures. Pruning thorned blackberries is pain enough to make you pull up the plants and start over with only thornless. Those thorned plants are lucky they have such big, delicious berries - larger berries than any of the thornless varieties.

I'm pruning the top of the plants to 3.5-4 feet and then pruning any lateral branches to 12-16 inches. I'm also cutting out any small sucker canes that came up. This is the first year than we've pruned this way. It should result in easier picking and larger berries. There may be less total berries than prior years, but probably less wasted berries hiding in a thicket of impenetrable brambles. We'll just have to see. In any case, it looks more ordered and more "farmlike."

We're very excited about the upcoming berry season. The blueberry plants are larger of course, so there will be even more blueberries. We've got another year under our belt of understanding how these plants grow. This should mean happier plants and more plentiful and healthy fruit.

The cabins are almost finished. There are a total of four cabins. I need to take some more pictures. Two of the cabins are finished, save a few more pieces of furniture. The other two still need to have their tile floor installed and then they'll need to be furnished. I realize that we're way behind the "early October" pronouncement in an earlier blog. Perhaps that date was a little unrealistic (thanks Dad!). In any case we think you'll be impressed when we're finished. Hopefully some of you berry pickers will come spend a whole weekend on the farm! We're really looking forward to our first cabin guests.

AeroGarden Expaeroment - Day 38

Plants are looking good. You might notice something out of place... or missing... in the AeroGarden. There are two bunches of purple basil!! The seed pod labeled chives was a fraud. No chives. More purple basil.

I called AeroGarden to complain and they sent me a chive seed pod, which at this point isn't a lot of help since all the plants are already quite large. I'd rather have extra purple basil than chives anyway, so I'm sticking with the basil. I've got "real" chives growing in a pot outside anyway.

Check out the picture of the roots. These plants are out of control. It's amazing how many white tentacles are spread out in the AeroGarden lagoon. Actually quote creepy. Looks like some sort of saprophytic web just waiting for a small creature to fall in so it can really dine!

Biology speak

So, naturalists observe,
a flea has smaller
fleas that on him prey;
and these have smaller still
to bite 'em; and so proceed,
ad infinitum.

- Jonathan Swift

AeroGarden Expaeroment - Day 22

Another update. Looking good. Added the second fertilizer tablet at two weeks. A blinking light alerts you that it is time for more fertilizer.