Things I learned about farming from tending to a solitary pomegranate shrub for an entire three months:
- Plants have no self discipline. Four pomegranates all clumped together on one branch?! The branch can't hold that kind of weight! And the fruit can't grow to its proper size all crowded together. Sheesh, plants! I shouldn't have to break out my mad helicopter parenting on you!
- There are insects that exist for the sole purpose of eating your crops. They don't live in the surrounding area. They just live on your pomegranate bush, and repopulate so much they put bunnies to shame. FUN FACT! Some insects spray a foul odor when the farmer gets too close. Those are some fun farming times, y'all.
- There is a large amount of pruning necessary. I am merely guessing at this, as my pomegranate bush looks like it is suffering from a severe case of scoliosis. The whole thing is bent at a ninety degree angle. It looks awesome... and by awesome, I mean awfully pitiful.
- After fending off a bug invasion, waiting for what seemed like forever, and look! The fruit is not anywhere near ripe! Even though you followed the instructions you found on the internet to the letter... or just kind of ignored the thing and hoped for the best. Either way, the inedible harvest is nothing but a gaping reminder that buying a few pomegranates from Smith's for like, $5 is NOT THAT BIG OF A DEAL. (at this point, it is PREFERABLE)
- Pomegranates are a stupid fruit anyway; Hipster fruit. Not worth all the work. And thrown into way too many smoothies, salads, yogurts, etc. at this point.
Can you tell that I will be actively working AGAINST growing another pomegranate crop next year? I will be out snipping those flowers, because NO WAY am I doing that again. The only thing I am growing now is the Rosemary in the front yard. Because you can't kill that stuff. I've actually tried. Spiders live up in there, and that skeeves me out. This rosemary helps me very little as I never cook with rosemary... ever.
Pro Tip: self-sustainable living is a load of crap. Buying produce at the grocery store is WAY easier. And causes fewer stress headaches (fewer stink bug invading as well)