Mid-Summer at Cricket Hill Garden 2016

It’s been hot, hot, hot and dry, dry, dry here in northwestern Connecticut. Despite the lack of rain, this being New England, it’s still very humid. While we are wilting in this weather, the plants, particularly the vegetables, love it–so long as we can manage to give them lots of supplemental irrigation. It’s time like this, that we feel fortunate to grow peonies as our main crop. As anyone who grows these plants knows, they are heat and drought resistant. Here’s a look at what we’ve been up at the nursery the last few weeks.

In July, the garden is a buzzing all-you-can-eat buffet for the butterflies and bees.

Our veggie garden is looking great this year. Mulching for weed control and watering are key to success, but so are healthy soils nourished with compost and amended withAzomite.

Oceans of kale!

One of our favorite figs, is the classic French variety ‘Violette De Bordeaux.’ It has a rich, sweet flavor, with strawberry flesh.

Aronia berries are almost ripe!

‘Portugal’ quince staring to size up. These will be ready for harvest in about six weeks.

Kasha hard at work harvesting shiitake mushrooms in 90 degree heat.

We got a visit from a rarely seen guest today, a luna moth caterpillar.

We hope to introduce our organically grown fruit and berry plants to some new gardeners with our display at New Morning Market in Woodbury, CT.

Ethan, a star member of our nursery crew, off to the new field for a ‘harrowing’ experience.

This new field will be planted this fall. With our intensive planting plan, we can fit 5,000 tree peony grafts in this area. The soil is quite acidic, so we have amended with lime to raise the pH. If you thinking of adding some peonies to your garden this fall (hopefully on a smaller scale than we are) see our page on preparing new ground for fall peony planting.

Just in case this post makes it seem like everything is just free and easy in the summer at Peony Heaven, consider: jacked-up 3 wheeled tractor in the middle of the woods…fourth wheel full of calcium carbonate (weighing about 400 lbs.) in the bed of the truck… just don’t ask

A view of our newly cleared 4 acre growing area.

Some where over the rainbow…July 25, 2016

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