I have to say that you're the most gracious, kind people on the planet!
With much kindness and deep appreciation of your sincerity, I laughed so hard when I saw that some of you thought I actually grow produce right now! Actually my husband was laughing harder, and I (acting like he had hurt my feelings), was nearly peeing my pants from laughing on the inside.
I can grow blueberries, tons of them. Too many years invested in their establishment. We even have some pears and the occasional persimmon, if the deer don't get them...or hobo goats.
If you are near, COME PICK SOME in about 3 weeks!
I go and BUY three or four cases of greenish bananas on Wednesday mornings to donate to the Food bank. That's what we are spending that government check on until/if Steve is laid off and we need it.
My father had established a practically deer-proof garden plot years ago. It was for vegetables, constructed using tall dog kennel panels. He was a busy doctor, but still took time to grow squash, okra, and string beans. He had a green thumb, but no time. Those veg choices are hardy here, even with random care.
My grandparents had amazing gardens and orchards...they completely lived on the land (they also had a small herd of beef cows for some of their meat). Granddaddy taught Vocational Agriculture at the local county high school.
Their gardening magic didn't wear off on me, though I spent hours and hours helping them when visiting. I helped weed, pick, peel, pare, snap, pickle, blanch, and freeze/can.
I also learned how to sun dry apple slices on a scrap piece of corrugated barn roofing sheet metal on the bed of an old pick-up truck out back. How about that. (My Grandmother made the BEST hand pies from these, year round.)
Anyway, I wish I had a "before" picture of the enclosure. I was really embarrassed of it's state of being...how many of us take pictures to intentionally share honest pictures of things that shame us? Having a garden is not at the top of the to-do list. And the wild stuff slowly continued to grow.
No matter how hard I work, it always seems like I am chasing something beyond my ability. The enclosure is completely grown over with volunteer trees, large bushes, wild blackberry vines, huge thorn vines, honeysuckle, wild grapevine, etc. Vines are even weaving in and out of the chain link panels.
On a side note, stop reading right now if you don't like a good hobo goat bedtime story from last June-July...
Hobo goats are one of the uninvited scourges of rural living. There is a U-shaped end of our valley (with a sheer, rocky, 30-ft drop between our property and some goats). That means, there are two 30-ft drops between us and neighbors "across the holler."
A big, bad Billy from "over thar" escaped with four nannies in tow. They actually went down the far side and up on this side. I don't know how.
I saw the goats here off and on for almost two weeks before I decided they weren't leaving. Of course Steve was up north with his dad for several weeks. I put some poster signs out at the main road with my phone number. They obviously felt at home despite my metal pot and spoon.
A neighbor (of a girlfriend, of a sister, of a guy's sister-in-law) saw the poster and called the "owner," Mike. After a week of the goats missing, he had figured a wolf or a bob cat had gotten to them and he had stopped looking.
Even though we are close "as the crow flies," by pick-up truck it is a little of a drive. I don't think it occurred to him that Billy would lead his harem over to our side of the mountain.
Meanwhile, those darn walking garbage disposals ate pears, little apples, persimmons, and iris blades. They broke off both of the little apple trees, AT THE TRUNK. They also broke most of the limbs on the larger apple, broke the trunk of a crepe myrtle I had been nursing, and did damage to the pear and persimmon trees, breaking bottom limbs getting the upper fruit.
Billy was a big, tall, old fool. He knocked fruit off the trees for his four girlfriends.
We had a few, poorly-producing blueberry bushes that my parents had planted twenty years ago. They were planted too near the house before a surrounding tree canopy grew. Those idiot hobos ate those struggling berry bushes to the ground.