Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Got A Lot Done But . . .

We've all had 'em.  The days we have planned out perfectly . . . but then we end up doing something entirely different.

I was going to get up early yesterday morning, do a couple of hours of desk/computer work, make a quick run into town for some needed supplies and be well into my brick work for the day by 10 a.m.

I should never had taken that early morning walk down to the raspberries to see if their leaves were starting to bud out yet.  We've been wanting to get a jump start on the spring pruning of our 42' of raspberries but the ground has been too wet for a couple of weeks now.

Lo and behold, what I saw on my walkabout in the morning was perfect conditions in the raspberry patch.  Plus, it was a beautiful day to be outside.  Temp in the high 60s/low70s early on, lots of sunshine and a blue sky filled with cumulus clouds.

As much as I want to get the walls behind the wood stove in the living room done, I also know I can do that on a cold or rainy day.  So after a quick conference with my better half, we decided to do the raspberry pruning.

Here's a "before" shot of one row.

Same row after pruning.  Quite a difference, huh?

I was having such a great time out there and feeling so very good about getting at the raspberry patch BEFORE the weeds took over, I decided to tackle the few weeds that had already made themselves known in the actual plant rows and then the ones around the perimeter and between the three 14' long rows of canes we had pruned.

That took me right up until 4:30 and time to come inside (to save my lower back for another day) and rustle up something for dinner.  (Nothing like physical work outside all day to give you a healthy appetite, is there?)

Now all that needs to be done in the raspberries is to spread compost around the plants, till around the perimeter and between rows, and mulch everything with the straw mulch we took off the strawberry patch yesterday morning.  Oh, that's right! we uncovered the strawberries before we started work pruning the raspberries. 

So as much as I'm eager to work on getting the rest of the Z-Brick installed in the living room, I'm pretty sure I'm going to be spending any decent weather days for the rest of this week working outside.  For one thing, it is so invigorating to be working in the fresh air again, especially without any of our biting bugs yet being present (!), and I'm a person who feels boatloads better when I know I'm AHEAD of getting jobs done rather than being behind.  It's so much easier for me both emotionally and physically to get a jump start on all the outside garden work that needs to be done this spring before feeling like it's "gotten away from me." 

This week is shaping up to be busier than usual time so I may fall behind on finding time to read all of your blogs and make comments as I'd like to do.  As much as I want to do everything, I know at certain times it's just not possible.  But it's going to be a good, good remainder of the week and lots will be accomplished around this here old homestead!


  1. Somedays you just need to wear the horse blinders or you can find 100 other things to do. But at least you enjoyed your diversion. And why is it warmer there than here?

  2. The raspberries look great. Glad you decided to do that on a fine day. If Minny-soda is anything like here, there will be plenty of crappy days ahead for the indoor stuff.

  3. I am all for ditching the inside work for outside work whenever possible! You got a LOT done! And, yes, why IS Minny-soda warmer than us'ns down hereabouts? Send it on down!!!

  4. Make hay while the sun shines! Or just prune raspberry canes, in your case!

  5. Very impressive with what you got accomplished in just one day. And we had a fire in the fireplace ALL DAY LONG yesterday... you were warmer than we were in SC!! No offense, but something's wrong here. :)
    PS Don't worry about us blog-friends. You get done what you need to get done and we'll still be here for you to catch-up with when you can.
    PPS That's a clever trellis for your raspberries. I so need one of those for my blackberries. Another photo I need to show Tom...

  6. Geez, with those temps. you could have been in NC for the day. That would have been a bit of a long trip for one day, though. And raspberries ......... oh my, raspberries, how I love thee! Let me count the ways. One: Well, I just love them. I need to find a reason to head to MN and stop by when they are ripe. And you have blueberries too, right? Maybe I could come and just live in your garden while either or both are ripe. Our blueberries are just forming. Good luck with all your work ahead.

  7. That's how I "do" it at this time of year too. Work outside when it's nice. all seems to even out. I just planted 6 whole raspberry plants (it's a start). I'll have to start taking notes on their care!!

  8. The good thing is you at least accomplished something that you neeeded to get done. When I get distracted I usually don't get things done at all. Good for you. Wanna come prune my raspberries.

  9. Jane - Can't quite believe your weather! This whole weather thing is making absolutely no sense. But what can we do but roll with it??

    Sue - Spring in the northland isn't like spring elsewhere, is it? Super-frustrating when you want/need to get those outside jobs done. In our case, especially before the blasted bitey bugs come out!

    Susan - Got another great day outdoors yesterday and today looks to be a fine one, too. Only problem is that undone brick wall area is starting to make me feel reeeeally guilty for not getting on it!

    CR - Or clean up a strawberry patch as I hope to do today!

    Lisa - Methinks Mother Nature turned her weather map upside down! Crazy, crazy . . .

    Stephanie - I can't tell you how very GOOD it feels to spend whole days outside! I just feel better even though I'm working my tuchus off. (Which, by the way, could benefit from some whittling down.)

    Karen L. - Your blueberries are forming??! Geesh, you can just BARELY see leaf buds forming on our bushes! What a difference several growing zones make!

    dr momi - The nice thing about raspberries (my favorite) compared to strawberries (hubby's favorite) is that they last for years and years and years with proper care. Those dang strawberries have to be replaced after a few years!

    Ruth - I'd LOVE to come prune your raspberries! Think of the fun we'd have chattering on and on while we were doing it!!

  10. I think you made an excellent decision! Now you know you can just sit back and know the berries are on autopilot! :)

  11. Well the bugs are in full force here. I have about a dozen new mosquito bites from working outside this evening. I do love when inspiration hits and you get a major job done and out of the way. Your raspberries look ready for a good growing season now.

  12. I had to laugh at this. This seems like what it's like at our house. I feel like I'm forever putting out fires and not getting many of the things on "the list" done.
    But well done on getting those canes thinned. That's a job and a half!!

  13. Erin - It does feel great to know that little task is done for the season!

    The Weekend Homesteader - Ooooh, don't even say the word MOSQUITOES! Hate, hate, hate 'em!

    Judy - My hands and wrists are covered with little cuts from the raspberry thorns. And I had gloves on when working in the canes! It IS a job and a half but with both of us doing the thinning, it really went fast.

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  15. judy - You didn't have to remove your comment. I've been thinking about it for a couple of days. You know my heart goes out to you. You are dealing with so much, is there somewhere (social services in your area) where you can go to get support? It's not like you're whining or complaining, I know that. I wish you had someone to give you the support you deserve. Hugs.