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Kitchen Garden

Peak Bloom

Red Delicious apple tree in peak bloom. April 30, 2021.

Friday outdoors work included mowing grass and running the trimmer in the ditch. I worked up a sweat.

Near the curb box for the cable connection were two morel mushrooms. I didn’t harvest them. Hopefully they will propagate and next year there will be more. It’s the first time I found morels on our property.

I planted Rouge vif D’Etampes pumpkins and Sarah’s Cantaloupe in soil blocks. It’s my first time growing both of them. Once they germinate, I’ll put them in larger pots, then into the ground. They are the last of the new seeds to be started indoors. From here it is succession crops of lettuce, broccoli, cabbage, and others.

The goal is to get initial planting done by Friday, May 28, which is the beginning of the Memorial Day weekend. After that, I can celebrate the holiday and turn to other projects.

April was a dry month with dry conditions persisting across parts of the state. “We’ve had a significant expansion of that D-O or abnormally dry category,” state climatologist Justin Glisan said. “As a reminder, that’s not drought but it is a sentinel for us to recognize that we are seeing drier-than-normal conditions, given precipitation deficits through late spring.”

May is to be a wetter month, he said.

Because ours is a home garden, the produce of which is used mainly in our kitchen, I don’t get carried away with watering. I make sure to apply some daily moisture, but feel it is not my job to make up for the lack of rainfall.

Even though I mowed, it didn’t produce a lot of clippings for mulch. Likely because I set the deck at four inches. This year, a larger part of the garden will have black landscaping fabric serving as mulch. It worked particularly well with peppers and tomatoes last year, and I saved the fabric to re-use.

Fruit is setting on apple and pear trees. Yesterday was peak bloom and fallen petals blanket the ground. Soon the bloom, with its sweet fragrances will be finished, followed by a long season to harvest. If good conditions persist, the harvest will be a great one. It is what a gardener works toward.

One reply on “Peak Bloom”

When I lived in northern Lower Michigan, many people went mushrooming for morels in the springs. I loved those that I’ve eaten in restaurants but always felt leery about trusting myself to pick something in the wild to eat. That would be great if you ended up with a large patch of them for next year!

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