Today was the day that we took delivery of our fruit trees for this year.
The order was placed on behalf of many families.
The goal was to bring prices down by buying in quantity.
The family who dealt with administering the order, hosted the delivery along with a potluck dinner.
It was a great opportunity to fit some like-minded people together for making new acquaintances as well as to talk about subjects that are normally left at home.
We started with a tour , including a hoop house for extending the growing season.
It is helpful to see ideas and plans first-hand. With the hoop house are some rainbarrels with tarps, intended for harvesting water.
We have a great deal of water on our property, but the harvesting idea would be great for those places where water is necessary, but not immediately on hand.
The ice was broken quickly and talk turned to the issues of sustainable farming and other permaculture strategies. It seems that everyone has a special field of interest and experience. The benefit of collaborating is obvious when there is so much diversity to bring to the table.
We could only scratch the surface a bit before the truck arrived with the trees and plants.
There was excellent organization prepared for divvying up the order.
The fact that the trees and plants arrived roots only and not in pots with soil was unexpected by all.
Trees in pots can wait around for awhile.
These were like fish out of water and took extra consideration.
Everyone would have to either get them into the ground or at least heel them in somewhere until the final sites were prepped.
Once everything was laid out in the shade and accounted for, it was time to get some food and carry on with earlier conversations.
Fruit trees are a major investment.
They are costly, and take many years before bearing fruit.
I don't know enough about the subject to feel confident about the decisions we make regarding fruit trees.
If there is an error, it may take several years before it becomes apparent.
Now that we are more aware of the opportunities available for our growing zone, it may be time to concentrate more on learning about selecting trees and the cultivars necessary to produce abundant fruit.
As I focus my attention towards breeding our own flock of chickens, I feel that acquiring breeding stock will allow us the same self sufficiency for fruit trees.
Part of reason for the group order was to learn who has fruit trees and plants and where they are. That way, we may trade with each other for scions and suckers for propagating our own future trees and plants; without relying on nursuries to ensure that what we need is always available and affordable.
Beyond simply trees and plants, we met a lot of people who have much more to offer than just plant material.
That is where the real value lies.