24 June 2015

the little apple tree

It was around this time last year that I first noticed it, the little apple tree round the corner from No 1.  Even though it's only a few yards away, I don't often see it close up as it's normally obscured by parked cars and I tend not to walk on that side of the road. Soon I realised how many other apple trees were dotted around the place, replacements for some brutally excised diseased trees. I considered adopting one to contribute to Lucy Corrander's impressive list of tree followers but I just knew that I would be too ill-disciplined to post regularly.

It was a while before I noticed this year that the little tree was suffering somewhat from the mini-drought we are having here. When I popped out last night at dusk, half moon feebly shining in the still-blue sky, I was hoping to capture something of Samuel Palmer's Magic Apple Tree, all golden in the light of the street lamp*, but I found instead a sad, dry tree, covered in tiny apples almost hoping for the June drop.

So we are I am on a mission to revive the tree. I went out this evening with a watering can - several times - and started the treatment. Half the water ran off into the gutter so I'll be scrounging some compost to act as a mulch (and hopefully not a dog toilet). One or two people looked at me rather suspiciously but a passing skateboarder gave me a smile and a thumbs up as he sped by and propitious birdsong echoed through the streets, so I'm hoping fortune is on our side. Just imagine if some of those apples survive, the apprehension of waiting for them to ripen - or mysteriously disappear into a pocket, a pie or the gutter. Little things, people.

* I know, very unlikely if not totally preposterous, but it's one of my favourite paintings, and the idea that there might be a magic apple tree round the corner is just too beguiling.


E15 kids said...

You know much more about gardening than I ever will but would it be worth getting one of those tree bags (I think they are called Treegator) which are placed around the trunks of many a tree on the Olympic Park? I presume they are there to get the water to the right destination.


materfamilias said...

We're currently rounding up the second month of drought, and beginning a week of predicted 30-degree temps with no precipitation in sight (very unusual for this early in the summer), and the City of Vancouver has just asked residents to help watering newly planted trees on the city boulevards, parks, etc.. . yours is very good example to follow, and I hope your rescue efforts are successful!

Annie Cholewa said...

I'd have given you a thumbs up too. We have quite a few random apple trees dotted about the village but hardly anyone harvests the fruit. It makes me sad every year seeing so many apples go to waste, but I guess that's because a lot of the gardens here have fruit trees too, I'm sure in the city free apples will be greatly appreciated when, fingers crossed, you've succeeded :)

shandy said...

The drought has hit everything this year. It sounds rather as though you've been going through some sort of drought yourself. But this kind of nurturing activity with the tree may bear fruit.