Gardening is one of my favorite hobbies, and by gardening, I mean the growing of vegetables and fruits. We have fig trees, apple trees, peach trees, pecan trees, and a few other fruit trees. We grow turnips, collards, tomatoes, okra, peas, butterbeans, peppers, and my favorite, squash. It's too early for many of those, although around the middle of the month, we will be planting our turnip seeds. My collard plants look as if they have survived the winter, and I don't anticipate having to buy more.
Another activity my husband and I will engage in this month, if the Lord and we are willing, is to prune our fruit trees, and perhaps invest in a few more. What does this have to do with historical life? Not so long ago, most families had their own kitchen garden. We forget that fruits and vegetables were not always so abundant in the stores, even if you were lucky enough to live near one that sold perishable goods. Most goods in the general stores were staples, such as flour, and cornmeal, perhaps meat that had been cured, salt, and perhaps a few more common spices.
And thus the need for a kitchen garden and the need to take the month of February to prepare the soil and prune the trees.
|Most planted fruit trees near their cabin for convenience.|
|Apple pie is my favorite!|
|An apple tree, ready to be pruned.|
Perhaps due to Johnny Appleseed's influence, apple orchards became common across America, such as Lonely Grove Orchard. I am in the process of creating a new series set near that very orchard. In Joy, Unending, the story ends with Tristan planning to build a school. Joy will continue creating her jellies and jams and her apple desserts for the school children. I can't wait to share some upcoming news with you about that soon. Stay tuned!
If you garden, please tell us about it in the comments. In the meantime, happy reading!