Sorry, No More Raspberries & Cherries: click for details
 

SORRY – NO MORE RASPBERRIES AND CHERRIES

We made the decision last fall to end our production of raspberries and cherries so that we would have time available to ensure that our apple production is sustainable for the long term. We have known for years that the amount of time we spent maintaining the raspberries meant that some time critical work on the apples did not get done. The raspberries were taking 40% of the total work effort but producing far less of the revenue, so we have taken out almost all our raspberries and cherries except for a small amount for family use.

We know this will disappoint many people, but we will still be able to welcome you and the many others who come for apples in the fall.

There are several options to find berries elsewhere:

  1. Dutton’s Farm Stand on RT 11&30 in Manchester will have already picked raspberries – also good strawberries picked and pick your own in June – plus lots of good fruit and vegetables all year.
  2. Wildwood Berry Farm next door at 2977 Mad Tom Rd will have blueberries later in July and early August.
  3. Merck Forest in Rupert has some pick your own raspberries which are a fairly long walk to reach plus many good family activities.
  4. Champlain Orchards in Shoreham is a large diversified fruit producer and has both raspberries and cherries.

Make sure to check with any of these folks to be sure that they have berries available before you go.

We greatly appreciate the support for our berries you have given us over the years and will definitely miss seeing you in the summer, but look forward to seeing you in the fall for apples.

Tom & Sylvia

BLOOM IS FINALLY STARTING

After weeks of cold damp weather, bloom is finally starting.  The photo shows a strong bloom just opened up on the Zestars – the earliest to bloom and the earliest to ripen – usually Labor Day weekend.

MacIntosh, Gala, Honeycrisp etc. are still at pink but will open soon with the warm days.  Overall the number of flowers gives us the potential for a good crop – but after the heavy crop last year, Honeycrisp will be very light.  The bumble bees are out looking for open blossoms.

So we are well started on growing another crop.

 

Zestars in bloom

 

 

SPRING IS ACTUALLY COMING

The snow out in the orchard is finally melted and we are busy chipping brush.  Pruning is almost complete.

I am mostly recovered from my Halloween mishap.  Once the brush is chipped, some mowing, fertilizer spreading etc. that did not get done last fall is on the to do list.

We will get green tip showing on the buds by the end of the month.   Maple syrup makers have had a short season so far and we hope they get a few more days.

MAKING HEADWAY

Yesterday I got the wires off – we had to check in at 5:30 AM at Albany Med, so we went over Sunday afternoon and stayed at the hotel across the street from the hospital.

Short procedure and we were out by 10:00.  Picture shows breakfast at MacDonald’s afterwards.  The next challenge is getting my jaws to open more and get my double vision reduced (eliminated?) so I can drive, but we are moving forward.

I appreciate  the many sympathetic comments – more than I am able to respond to.  Christmas is coming and I plan to eat turkey.  Wishing everyone a great holiday.

A LOT TO BE THANKFUL FOR

Also thankful that I am able to write this post.  Our usual post harvest trip to Maine was replaced with multiple trips to Albany Medical Center.

On Halloween afternoon I had an accident while cutting up one of the old Cortland trees that had been blown over onto the deer fence.  I did not see that a branch was under tension from the fence and it hit the right side of my face when I cut it loose.

Fortunately, I was wearing a hard hat, but the impact broke essentially all the bones on the right side of my face and my jaw. There were major cuts around my right eye, but the vision should be ok.

So now I am three weeks post surgery –  supposed to get the wires holding my jaw shut removed in a week.  It has been fine dining thru a straw – Sylvia is now expert with a blender.  Both our daughters from Massachusetts have been up lending support and friends have brought lots of great soup.

This has been quite a speed bump, but I expect to make a full recovery. I have been making good use of our woodstove in this cold weather and hope to be out in the orchard soon.

Next year we plan on celebrating Halloween differently and having a full Thanksgiving dinner.  Best wishes for a safe holiday season to all.