And yet, despite that we still had more fruit than we could eat. Starting with sour Rhubarb freshly cut and dipped in sugar starting in late march all the way to throwing Concord grapes as high as we could during Halloween and catching them in our mouths. Between those dates we gorged ourselves on strawberries, blueberries, raspberries, then plums, apples, cherries (any that survived the fungus and birds) and pears.
I always knew when I had my own property I wanted to try and replicate this experience wherever I ended up.
Well in 2012 we purchased our first house in Quebec, Canada just north of Ottawa. Our growing zone is 4a/b (USDA 3a/b) and the coldest so far I have seen our winters get down to was -38C (-36F). Our summers can be on the opposite end with a couple weeks at +35C (95F). Last frost is usually early May but can be as late as 3rd week of May. First frost is usually during the first two weeks of October but can be during the second week of September.
My property is one acre in size and has the backyard facing due south with excellent south and western sun exposure. Wind is predominately from the west and the north. Beggars can’t be choosers and so my soil is not what you would consider ideal for growing. It is very heavy clay with poor drainage. The terrain is quite flat and standing water can collect in numerous areas during heavy rains and can remain for weeks during late winter and early spring.
So follow along as I go about learning how to cold climate garden with the goal of fruit abundance.