The Fruits of My Labor

Last winter I ordered some raspberry plants to be delivered to me in the spring. I received the 18 “plants”on about April 20, when it was still cold and miserable in Minnesota. I put “plants” in quotes because they appeared to be just sticks. Not a spot of green on any of them. The directions said to put them in the ground and water them, so I did.

Around May 10, a few little green sprouts started appearing on the sticks, and then disappearing. I scratched my head and thought I must be imagining things. After a few rounds of this, I realized some critters must be munching the green buds off my raspberry sticks in the night! I put some tomato supports around them, which did kept the critters away. Then through the summer, I watered and watered and weeded and weeded, and watered some more, and now I have about surviving 13 raspberry plants. Only a few of them gave me berries this first year, but this one turned out pretty well:

The rest of the surviving plants seem fairly healthy and they look like this:

As for berries, I guess I’ll have to wait till next year for more than a small handful. And I will order some more plants as well. I have to say, however, that despite the satisfaction of now having a small raspberry patch, being able to harvest fewer than 30 berries is really disappointing. I always start my garden in the spring with such excitement, but when the cold weather rolls around, I’m sick of weeding and the “what ifs” (I had planted earlier, later, a different kind, etc.). It’s really one of the only good things about winter–there are plenty of long, dark, cold nights to think about next year’s garden.

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