I can’t believe summer is already winding down! Not in real estate though- we’ve had a belated spring rush. (You can ask me about that later if you need…)

As our summer winds down, my garden is ramping up. Not completely in a good way though: I was inspecting my pear trees a couple of weeks ago and was startled to see my favorite Asian pears dimply. Perplexed, I googled, “Why are my pears dimpling?” That’s the first time I’d ever heard of Stony Pit Virus. It’s a tree virus that gets into the root and makes the fruit misshapen and often inedible. The only solution was to remove the tree completely- and not even plant a new one in its place!

I was horrified. Don had fought to turn our very small backyard into a suburban haven of pear, apple, cherry, fig, and plum trees. What I’d been amused by earlier, I couldn’t fathom getting rid of now.  

Not to be persuaded quite so quickly, I picked a few of the worst offenders and trotted to Sunnyside Nursery, down the block. They’d never seen anything like it. But after I told them I’d had healthy fruit since 2017 and this was the first year of the dimples- after I hadn’t gotten around to spraying them this year- they didn’t think that stony pit virus was the culprit. They started researching, and this was the first we three had heard of the Apple Dimpling Bug, affecting both apple and pear trees. They banquet on early fruit, just after blossoming. Then as the fruit grows, it becomes misshapen and unsaleable. Whole fruit crops can be destroyed by these little buggers. 

The bad news? I won’t have much of a crop this year. I still have some beautiful fruit (see below). But most of my pears will go into the yard waste bin. And the good news? I’ll spray the ever-living snot out of them just after pruning next spring, and my beautiful Asian pears should bounce right back into the juicy, crisp beauties they’ve always been.

As homeowners and stewards of our houses and properties, we’re in charge of what’s been given to us. We’re constantly deciding when/how to fix and when/how to replace. My friend Carol just had her refrigerator repaired rather than replaced. A top-end fridge that originally cost thousands, she had it repaired for $700. But she used ice chests for five weeks before she could make it happen. I would have headed down to Judd and Black during week two!  

So when do we decide to repair versus replace? I googled that question. Jonathan Davis wrote an article on asset management that said, “The concept is straightforward. When the cost of repairing an asset is more than its value, you replace it. When the cost of the repairs is less than the value, you repair it. It’s basically the same concept used by car insurance companies.” 

Some stewardships are more personal than others. Only part of our homes’ value has to do with money. Because it’s more than a shelter. It’s a home, sanctuary, retreat, legacy, memory, etc. Right now, my pears are priceless.  Do you need repairs? I know a few contractors.

Do you need new pear trees? I know a great nursery. Do you need a different home because it would cost you more to remodel than it would to buy already built? We can help you with that.

In the meantime, I’m going to watch and wait for my pears and apples to ripen in the next few weeks. Then I’ll be making pear-applesauce, apple crisp, frozen and dehydrated apple and pear slices… And more than once I will sit in the backyard, letting the pear juices dribble down my chin and thanking my Don for planting these gorgeous trees that remind me of him.