Our family has gotten into some major gardening this year, and you’ll be seeing a whole lot of it coming up this summer.
Our first project was a strawberry bed.
We LOVE strawberries! Just fresh picked and washed. In our cereal. As strawberry shortcake. Chocolate covered strawberries. : ) If our crop is plentiful enough, I may even make some jam!
In early May, Michael built the bed, and we filled it with some ordered and delivered loam, because our yard/land is pretty sandy. Then we planted 2 kinds of strawberries. Junebearing, and Everbearing. I discovered while planting that we didn’t get a tag for the Everbearing plants. I was irked with that, not only because I would have liked to know which variety of Everbearing we got, but also because I wanted to photograph that tag too. lol Anyway, once all was planted, the bed as a whole looked somewhat on the pathetic side, but I was hopeful they all just needed to get acclimated to their new home. Don’t look at the ground around it for now. We’ve got BIG plans for all of that too.
Here’s a shot of a newly planted Everbearing. When I came across it in my shots, I had to include it because, you have no idea how much time I spent trying to figure out what the original orientation of the photo was that I shot it at. I did 2 full rotation, 90 degrees at a time, trying to figure it out. lol. If you think it looks wrong now, you should see the other ways. I was getting dizzy. I must have shot it at a weird angle.
This is the tiny beginning blooms of this Everbearing plant.
That first day that we had gotten this garden all planted, a vacationer staying in the beach house next door, asked me how we planned to keep the birds, squirrels and other pesky creatures out of the strawberry garden. I told him I wasn’t sure, but that I shouldn’t have to worry about it for awhile, because they didn’t even have berries yet. He just looked kept looking at me, and didn’t respond to that, which I determined as rather odd. Made me glad, in the moment, that he wasn’t a real neighbor. Know what I’m saying?
Well, the next morning we discovered a squirrel romping around in our bed!! The strawberry bed I mean. Not the one we were sleeping in. lol. (Thank goodness.) Not only was he/she (whatever…who cares) trampling all over the place, but it had already bitten off several of the long stems to the Junebering plants! Turns out Mr. Funny-Looks that was next door, is from Vermont, and has acres of all kinds of gardens. Or something.
Well….I saw Michael do that tight-lips thing he does, when he is super aggravated. I think it took him all of 2 hours to sketch out a battle plan, (remember…he sketches everything out first) go to Home Depot for some supplies, and build THIS baby…….
I was DULY impressed, as I often am with his designing and building abilities, and his facial expression had definitely moved onto one that spoke more of, “Take THAT squirrels.” And then one of the kids suggested we get up early the next morning, sit in the window and wait for the squirrels to come, and laugh at them. (I don’t know WHERE they learned such gloating-type attitudes!? lol) (OK, I might know where, but I’m not telling you.)
So that all was back in May. Yesterday in the late afternoon, I went out and did some garden weeding. The cover just lifts right off very easily, if you’re not 4 legged gray-furred creature, with a long bushy tail. I thought I’d take some more photos while I was at it.
Just LOOK at all of the flowers on these Everbearing plants!!
I just learned that we should pluck these first flowers off, to give the roots more time to get established before the plant starts producing fruit. So I’ll do that today. I had been told, when we bought them, that the Everbearing plants, which tend to give a good 3 crops per season of the bigger, juicier strawberries, can take 2-3 years to really produce a good crop. But my mother-in-law disagrees with that and says we’ll get plenty this year. So I guess we’ll see what happens. Since the Junebearing only put out one good crop for 2-3 weeks ( around June, I’m guessing, lol), I wasn’t planning on a whole lot, collectively, THIS year. I hope my mother in law is right, this time. lol
But over at the Junebearing plantings, we’ve got berries growing all over the place!! Check it out!
As new gardeners, the initial discovery of strawberries growing had us screaming, and making the neighbor’s dog start barking. We were rather excited.
Sometime the next day, I saw a squirrel nearby, and before I could stop myself, I yelled in his little rodent face,
Now what does that tell you?