Thursday, January 26, 2012

Twigs and Trimmings in the Orchard!

It's early morning in the orchard, the peach trees are bare to the bone. This is pruning time, the short season between the time that the fruit trees are dormant and the time that the buds break in the spring. I have one more peach tree left to prune!
This year I was determined to salvage some of the peach tree trimmings for a little garden elegance. As I gather, strip, snip and chop, the old nursery rhyme keeps running through my head... five, six, pick up sticks, seven, eight... lay them straight! Now I know what they were talking about!
This little project definitely takes a lot of time and effort. I've already decided that this labor intensive endeavor  will not be happening every pruning season!

Today I have the perfect spot for at least a few of these little twigs! The larger projects won't be tackled until after the roses, blackberries and apple trees are all pruned.
Now, if you will just take a quick walk around the garden with me... I'll show you what's up around here!
 The orchard yard was covered with peach tree trimmings. I'm thinking... wreaths, spheres and stars for garden ornaments and next years holiday decor. The thicker branches will be just right for stakes, boarders and plant supports.
Here's one of the newly pruned peach trees. It's our Mid-Pride peach tree (thanks for sharing little tree).
Aren't they lovely! 

We kept some branches long and cut some short. These long branches are for an archway we will build at the entrance to the orchard. There's a Don Juan rose there, with lovely, long canes that are ready to be trained up and over! It'll take some bending, weaving and shaping. Hopefully one day it will be covered with red roses!
Here are a couple of spur of the moment  things we came up with... until we have a little more time to get creative. 
This was husband's idea... these are going to keep the stray cats out of his bell pepper box (we hope)! Later, we ended up weaving longer twigs through these sticks. These structures could be used for low fencing or walls.  
 I placed these whips all along my brick flower/ vegetable bed. It turned out to be a really delicate and pretty boarder. 
Here, our sugar snap peas are ready for a little support. We cut the ends of the twigs at an angle so they were nice and sharp, then just pushed them into the soil. We also built a few tee pee type trellis for our climbing bush beans.
Here are a few of  the inspiration photos that I've collected over the year. I love the rustic, twisty, turning, woodsy look of the branches. They are structurally and architecturally beautiful, but they also blend naturally into the garden, almost like they grew there on their own. 
I'd also like to share a post from one of my very favorite garden blogs, Ewa in the Garden. Ewa has captured some amazing photos of  Hampton Court in the UK sharing the ingenious ways that they have used tree trimmings for plant supports throughout the garden. Take a look! 
Thank you Ewa!  
Here are a few more ideas that I just couldn't pass up! If you'd like to see more go to my Pinterest page. 

Have a fantastic weekend! I am off to sharpen my pruners...  
We linked up with LaurieAnna's, here! We linked up with Homestead Barn hop too! Oh yes, and Happy Homemaker UK (post of the month club!)


hidden art of homemaking said...

your pictures are lovely..I don't know why but I just love the way a basketful of twigs looks..I am always trying to save the 'good ones'...and my husband is always trying to build the wood pile..LOL

I like what you have done with your trimmings..a true recycle...


Anita at Cedar Hill said...

Love the natural fencing, and i hope it works to keep the critters out.

HolleyGarden said...

Very creative! I loved all the ideas.

JwmJr said...

Sounds like a fun project, can't wait to see what you turn out.

Rob said...

That looks like lots of worthwhile works and looks so much better than anything manufactured by a machine. It's interesting to see all your crops in the background as here there is still very little in the garden.

Ewa said...

Great post and lots of inspiration!

SweetLand Farm said...

Looking at all your pictures makes me with it was spring so I could start a garden. I know it will be here soon, but...
Love peaches! Can't wait to see pictures of them!

Kim said...

Gorgeous and inspiring post! My Mid Pride is still too small for pruning, but I will definitely be saving the trimmings next year. (A book I say, a book!)

Lylah Ledner said...

I love this post beautiful Jill....beautiful...informative, you~ xoxo lylah

MarmePurl said...

Fabulous informative post! I plan on doing some apple tree pruning soon and plan to make food use of the cuttings. Many thanks.

Sweet Life Garden said...

A big thank you to everyone of you! I just love all of you and feel like we are all the best of friends! I wish we could all sit under a big peach tree and weave something beautiful and chat awhile!

GirlSprout said...

I came by via Happy Homemaker UK. I've seen the twig borders at a local nursery. They look like they might not be too hard to make on my own. Great post!

Clint Baker said...

I am a first time reader. Love your blog. Very good Ideas! Thank you for sharing.

Kerin said...

So glad to find and read your blog!
I love the way that you are recycling the prunings....brilliant!

Thanks for sharing your beautiful pictures, and great ideas :)

Travel With Lulu said...

So many great ideas. I love the border you made last year - very sweet. I'm looking for something similar to make a big heart wreath above my bed. I don't have any whiplike trees in my garden, so I am on a quest :)

Thank you for linking to Post Of The Month Club - it is great to have you there!