Just before Christmas a new pear tree and a couple of blueberry plants arrived in the post. They also came with a mulberry tree that was destined to be a Christmas present. I dug the mulberry in temporarily and set about planting the others.
I had to get some pots and ericaceous compost for the blueberries because my soil is much too chalky. The weather was frosty and the compost was mostly frozen. I thought about waiting for warmer weather but the forecast was for more cold weather so I went ahead and planted them. I couldn't leave them bare-rooted for too long and couldn't heal them in to the garden soil because it was too chalky. I planted them using the unfrozen parts of the compost and put 3 or 4 inches of bark chippings over the top to try to stop the cold affecting them too badly. Watering them in proved tricky too. They need rain water, because the tap water is too chalky. Because of the cold weather the water butt tap had frozen solid. Eventually the weather thawed enough for the tap to work and I could fill a watering can. I brought the watering can inside to warm up before I watered the bluberries so that they wouldn't freeze solid that evening. It seemed like a lot of hard work and probably serves me right for trying to grow something so unsuited to the soil type.
Planting the pear was much easier. I had dug the hole earlier alongside a wall where I wanted to train it as a cordon. I put in some decent compost and some chicken manure pellets and some rock dust. I had some bonemeal but forgot to put that in. I put a bamboo cane in at 45 degrees so that the tree would grow alongside the fan trained cherry next to it. I planted the tree with the scion side of the graft upwards, my books say that is better to reduce the chance of the scion taking root. Once I had firmed the tree in I tied it to the cane and watered it in. Hopefully it will help pollinate my established pear tree as well as producing some decent fruit itself.