The weather report said two nights of low 30s, and we figured it was time. So in come the potted lemons and caldomin oranges, the olive tree and friends. For the next few months they will only huddle and peer out at the brick pathway along the house’s south side, where they basked all spring, summer, and fall. Hopefully they are beefed up enough to survive the spider mites and scale that trouble them in dry indoor heat.
Just look at how they grew! Bodacious! We humans may be challenged to share space with some of our potted friends. Hopefully lemons and oranges are to follow. And although the produce is safe from munching birds, I may still have to net these indoor trees to get my fair share. Owen has sharp eyes, and often gets there first.
We have made the decision to put a small orchard in at the back of the house. Where the rise of land looks south and west should be a perfect spot. This morning I took the plunge, ordering two each of cherries, peaches, and pears from our old friend Stark Bros. I wanted to buy local, but the supply wasn’t there this late in the season.
Edward already planted a fig. We are waiting for delivery of blueberry bushes. The blueberries we did find local (Dimeo Farms, in New Jersey) and organic, for a good price too. I still want to find kumwats… I am dreaming about a variety of citrus that is winter hardy. I want food independence! And I want local, organically grown! So in spite of creaky knees and aging backs, Yes, we are returning to Suburban Growing our own food.
The decision is comforting. After all the uncertainty, all the struggles to make this Pennsylvania house clean and mold-safe, it looks like we are staying. We will always have to be careful with the house’s humidity levels, and cleaning, but more each month we are nestling in, and putting down roots. Thankfully.