Pear tree cutting

Today I went up to my boyfriend’s parents house and took 6 cuttings of their 100+ year old pear tree. We have no idea what kind it is, but we do know the tree is not as healthy as it used to be. Mark’s great-grandfather planted a pear orchard up on the property in about 1910 and this is the last remaining tree. We didn’t want it to die and have nothing left, so I decided to try my hand at rooting it. It’s something I have always wanted to do, but didn’t really have any major impetus. Here was my excuse to get my finger out and get moving :)

branches

After a lot of research, and following these instructions (mostly), I bought perlite, peat moss and rooting hormone powder. I then checked out the pear tree to find the healthiest branches with tips growing upwards that were at least 8 inches long with lots of nodes on them. I ended up cutting six in total.

pear_collage

When I brought them home, I mixed perlite and peat moss with about a 1:4 ratio and wet it slightly. I found a spoon was the best mixing utensil. I then poured some rooting hormone into a small bowl to keep the rest sterile, and dipped the cut ends of the branches in the powder. Once the ends were coated, I put them into the mixed perlite and peat moss and tamped it down around so they were stable.

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They need to be kept out of direct sunlight and also be kept from freezing, so they are inside the house and sitting in front of the fireplace. If we light a fire, they will be moved. I’m excited to see if some, or any, will root! If successful, I will probably put a few up on Craigslist as I’m sure a lot of people will want a 100+ year old pear cutting! It has to be heirloom…

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The times they are a-changing

Well, the weather is at least. After our week-long heat wave of 30C weather, we are now back into “normal” October weather. Grey, windy and cold. 12C today! We actually have all of our windows shut (weird for us) and I had to turn on the heat! Granted, it was only for 40 minutes to take the chill off. But still! Last weekend we were sitting outside in shorts having a BBQ! This weekend it’s all about braises and soups. I pulled my pork shoulder out of the freezer to make some pulled pork/carnitas and I had Gavin go to the butcher to get some sausages. Don’t sausages seem so wintery, especially with mashed potatoes and gravy.. Mmmm.

I feel bad for my poor tomatoes. They apparently thought that summer had arrived with all the warm weather and they sent out about thirty new flowers! Now it’s cold and I’m afraid that it’s just not going to happen. Instead, I can now just look forward to next seasons garden. I have tulip and daffodil bulbs to plant, some planters to build, and some foxes to contend with. Today, however, I am content to clean the flat and eat some of my late season peach butter. Yum!

Tinniegirl Blogtoberfest 2011

Window garden

I have had this mini-obsession with plants recently. At the office I have become the official gardener and have brought 7 plants from the brink of death to flourishing beauties. My crowning glory has been a clematis vine that I brought in and now have growing up a shelving unit near my desk. It is seriously growing about 4 inches a day, it’s amazing. Unfortunately, I have no plants at home. I keep thinking what kind I want and it’s hard because I don’t have an actual garden, just a windowsill in my room.

I think this little lovely “gardening bag” is a great idea! It’s cute, compartmentalized, and compact. And it would look lovely on my windowsill. I was thinking maybe a little herb garden.. Now I just need to figure out if anything like it is available here. The site is in German, which I can’t understand but I can ask the German’s at work.