Fruit and Salad

The garden will have found the damp morning refreshing after this week’s sunshine and the rain was a welcome sight for the recently planted out seedlings. The promised dry afternoon arrived and pottering about jobs continued apace, keeping on top of things while weather and time at home permitted. Moving left over cobbles and roped edges back to an out of the way stack inside the fruit cage an inspection of the fruity occupants showed me that, contrary to what might have been expected, all the fruit trees (greengage, pear, cherry and plum, the former not in focus for a photo) moved here last summer have survived and are breaking into leaf, and in some cases flower, bud. Considering they were moved in such a dry summer and haven’t been watered as much as they would have liked this is a near miracle – as young specimens they weren’t yet productive when they were unceremoniously evicted from what is now the shrub border, so expecting any fruit this year will be beyond even a miracle!

fruit.moveAn unexpected keeping-on-top task was dealing with an explosion of weed seedlings in the aforementioned shrub border and affecting almost half of it. I removed a small patch of them a few weeks ago but their mother must have taken exception to this as they have spread with a vengeance throughout all of the border that you can see in the photo:

IMG_4605I think the culprit is ‘garlic mustard’ which has never been a problem before and has generally been tolerated because of this and it may be that the exposed and prepared soil has been a magnet for it with the previous grass surface preventing ready germination. My wildflower book tells me that the plant smells of garlic (it does, faintly) when crushed and can be used in salads but I shall pass on that opportunity…


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23 Responses to Fruit and Salad

  1. It’s really nice to eat. We pick it in the woods and use it in salads and add it to pasta and potato gratins and things. Also called Jack-by-the-Hedge.

  2. Christina says:

    Whenever you turn the soil a whole lot of weed seed comes to the surface which was before safely buried in the dark. You’ll soon get on top of the problem. My plums are flowering at the moment and the peaches have already finished.

    • Cathy says:

      Yes, you are probably right – and I haven’t had an expanse of bare soil like this for a long while either. It was the speed and scale of the appearance of the stuff that took me by surprise

  3. Pauline says:

    Well done on moving your fruit trees successfully, not easy at the best of times. We have lots of Damson blossom and the bees have been busy in all the sunshine. The other blossom isn’t far behind, so hopefully the weather will be fine for pollinating insects otherwise I will have to get a paint brush out and pretend to be a bee!

    • Cathy says:

      I was really surprised that they did as it was definitely not a good time to be moving them. Must go and have a look at my damsons…

  4. AW, you’re not going to try the garlic mustard?? -:) I get it! Good luck to Pauline above, maybe a bee costume would help in that endeavor?

  5. I spent the day weeding and as much as that’s not my favorite part of the garden experience, it definitely looks nice–for now! It’s a never-ending problem. And none of mine are edible, I don’t think. 🙂

    • Cathy says:

      Most of my beds have so much stuuffed in them there is little room for weeds so this came as a shock. I would normally remove them by hand but it needed more than that here!

  6. Brian Skeys says:

    Weeds like nothing better than soil disturbance and sunshine, i am sure you will soon get on top of them, at least they are ‘edible’!

  7. Cathy says:

    It does actually taste quite nice Cathy! Mix it in a savoury pancake or add it to a casserole instead of spinach! 😉

  8. Chloris says:

    Your fruit trees are !looking very good despite their move. Jack- by- the – Hedge is very invasive but I always leave a few plants for the Orange – Tip Butterflies.

    • Cathy says:

      I have been aware of it in the garden before but only as plants and not seedlings – they must fling their seeds pretty wide! But I had to laugh at your comment – how do butterflies know how to find their favourite food? Can they smell it? Guess what I saw for the first time in the garden last week? Yes, and orange tip…. 🙂 I am sure they don’t need a forest of Jack by the hedge though….

      • Chloris says:

        They also like Lunaria. So you could keep that for your orange Tips.

        • Cathy says:

          Ahah – and I think there is small stand of J-b-t-h lurking beside my special snowdrop border PRETENDING to be honesty which I do have (the white variety) in that border. I kept looking at the leaves which are not too dissimilar… hmm. Thanks for info on the orange tip – I was so chuffed when I saw it as there was no doubt what it was, unlike other butterflies

  9. Garlic mustard is an invasive plant where I live and of great concern to gardeners and Arboretums etc.

    • Cathy says:

      I am beginning to form a comprehensive picture of it now – it has never been a problem before but now I hear how invasive it can be I will need to make sure it never does become a problem!

  10. rickii says:

    There are work parties around here to attack garlic mustard. I like the idea of turning into its natural predator and eating it until it’s gone.

    • Cathy says:

      This has been a really interesting thread of comments, rickii, and completely unexpected! I am certainly not going to wait till these seedlings are fully grown before I annihilate it in a mammoth garlic mustard eating session 🙂

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