If you remember, at the beginning of spring I was given some saplings to start an orchard. You can read about it here and here. We planted these right next to the garden, with some in the old hog lot and some not. Just like the garden, you could tell which ones were in the hog lot. It was especially noticeable with the cherry trees since some of those were in both places. (I'll try to get pictures)
I did quite a bit of work in the orchard, mulching, seeding between trees, and watering. The orchard didn't start out as good as I had hoped though. About half of the trees ended up surviving. The ones in the hog lot did slightly better than the ones that weren't there, but I think it might have had more to do with their delivery. They were supposed to arrive dormant, and when I received them, they were starting to leaf out.
All of the peach trees had leaves, and none of those survived. Although I watered them faithfully, their leaves quickly browned up after we planted them. None of the pear trees survived either. About half of the apples and plums did, and I think all of the cherry trees did.
I called the company that sent them, and thankfully they said they would replace them free of charge if I could send the roots back before November. I will then receive new dormant trees to plant this year yet. So you can guess what I'll be doing this week. :) After I get the trees dug, I will start making wire wraps to prepare for winter. Got to keep those bunnies away!
So hopefully with trying dormant trees in the fall instead of spring, and with some added compost, we will have a bit more success this round.