Mixing It Up

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Crop Report October 2-9, 2019

This week on the farm we are really mixing it up – we have both sweet and tart (cider) apples for the picking. We also still have an abundance of pears . Berries will be available on Saturday mornings only, as they are at the very tail end of the season.

WHAT IS NEW THIS WEEK
In our South Terrace, we will have the following:
  • Grimes Golden: Grimes Golden originated in 1790 near the town of Wellsburg in Brooke Co., West Virginia. It is such a popular apple that they have a granite monument commemorating it there in Wellsburg. It is one of the parents of the Golden Delicious. It will have a more complex flavor than the Golden Delicious – so don’t think if you’ve had a Golden Delicious that it will be the same – it is definitely worth the try!
  • Spitzenberg: This is one of the most popular of our Heritage apples – I am sure because it is storied that it was one of Thomas Jefferson’s favorite apples and he had some of the trees planted at his Monticello home. It is also believed to be a parent of the Jonathan apple
  • Golden Russet: Golden Russet is a famous, old “Southern” apple which originated in Burlington County, New Jersey in the 1700’s. This apple is very versatile and is excellent for drying. Because of it’s complexity and very tough skin – it is for a more mature and refined palate for eating – but is most noted for making hard cider. Its high sugar content can produce a cider with up to 7% alcohol content.
  • Baldwins: The Baldwin apple was once one of the most popular commercial apples in the late 1800’s to the early 1900’s , but a series of brutally cold winters killed off a good portion of the trees, so they were replaced with carieties such as the Macintosh. This apple truly is one of the older varieties as it was first documented as a seedling in Massachusets in 1740. This is a crisp juicy apple, but it does have a tougher skin.
In our Barn Terrace, we will have the following NEW apples (along with our Ozark Gold and Royal Gala’s, while they last):
Red Fuji: The old standard in many grocery stores for sure – the Fuji was introduced in 1900 and has remained a favorite ever since.
Golden Delicious: The Golden Delicious is a tried and true commercial favorite. It hails from West Virginia, 1912. It was such an immediate hit – that Stark Brothers purchased the patent on it in 1914 and put a huge fence up around it to keep people from stealing branches off of it.
The following have been popular these past few weeks, so, depending on the enthusiasm of our guests, these may not be available on the weekend.
  • Senshu is a newer apple (introduced in 1980), with a taste reminiscent of a Jonagold. Sweet and crisp – best for eating (not cooking). It is a cross of a Toko and a Fuji. Red and yellow striping with a white flesh.
  • Red Delicious: This is the first week of the Red Delicious and we do have some that have ripened enough to pick. Please only pick the reddest ones – as there are apples on the trees that are not ready just yet – please leave them be for following weeks.
  • Maidens Blush: This beautiful heritage apple is just as sweet and enticing as her name. Originating in Burlington, New Jersey in 1817, on the farm of Samuel Allison, this apple soon became a national favorite. It can have a bite early in the season, but now it is full of the flavor of honey and star anise. This apple is IDEAL for drying – it has been one of the best since it’s inception.
  • Snow Apple is another Heritage apple – even older than the Maiden’s Blush. It was first found noted in the Early 1600’s in France, then brought to America, by French Settlers in the 1700’s. It is often referred to on the farm as the “Snow White Apple” because it is a gorgeous, deep red skin wrapped around a stunning white flesh. It is a favorite dessert apple (good for eating and pairing with cheeses and wines). It is believed to be a direct ancestor of the McIntosh apple and has a juicy, robust flavor, with a hint of strawberry.
  • Royal Gala is always a favorite, so make haste if you wish to grab your fresh-off-the-tree gala’s this season, as they are flying from the branches. These sweet, apples are named “Royal” because they were the favorite of Queen Elizabeth. These are great paired with the following wines: Chardonnay, White Burgundy, White Bordeaux, Pinot Blanc, Viognier, Riesling (off-dry), Gewürztraminer.
BERRIES
  • We are light on all of our berries as we draw to the close of our berry season. We will still have them available on the weekend until they just can’t give any more.
PUMPKINS
  • As cute and quaint as our pumpkins are right now – many of the patches are NOT ready for picking – so please let them continue to grow. The far northern field above the liberty tree will be available beginning Saturday October 3 and all of next week, Monday through Friday.  Because of the dramatic winter season we just had, the green pumpkin fields are coming on later. PLEASE do NOT venture out into the green pumpkin patches, where the vines are attached (as tempting as it might be) as we need to leave the fields undisturbed for optimum growing conditions. 🙂 How do you know if a pumpkin is ripe when it is out in the field? The vine will die off – signaling that the fruit is ready. So if you see green vines – the pumpkin is not ready.
CORN
  • Our Indian corn is really coming on (despite the bears trampling a good portion of the stalks), but please let it be as it is still needing some growing time.

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This post was written by Shellie Milne

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