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Drowning Berries

Garth Brown |

For the first time this year the ground has gotten hard enough that sinking a shovel takes a bit of weight. But the current dry spell is too little too late for our raspberries, which are suffering from what I assume is stress caused by the sodden soil that’s been soaking their feet all year.

After starting the summer with its usual vigorousness, the patch set far less fruit than usual, and most of the leaves took on a coppery color. Then, right when I would expect the first flush of ripe berries, a second round of vegetal growth occurred, so the canes are only now heavy with their usual crop, roughly a month behind schedule.

The apple trees in our yard have had it even worse, with various molds and blights and rots attacking their fruit and leaves and bark, though their wild counterparts look to be bearing well, though I don’t know if even they’ll have enough sugar to make decent cider.

Though it’s a yearly refrain at this point, I am really hoping for a long, mild, sunny fall.


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