PRUNING ALMOST DONE

We have made a lot of headway in the two months since I last posted.  Most of the pruning is done – in  the photo below we are working on the Zestars up near the road.  Many things need to go well to make a good harvest, but there appear to be a good quantity of fruit buds which is the first step in getting a good crop. Once the pruning is done, then the next big task is picking up all the brush and feeding it thru the chipper. 

Yesterday for PI day Sylvia baked one of the dozen Zestar pies that we made in September and froze for use over the winter.  The early ripening Zestars  spicy flavor make them our favorite pie apple.  Watch our web and Facebook in late August for date of early apple weekend at the beginning of September because Zestars get picked out quickly.

In addition to orchard work, I have made very good headway with the immunotherapy treatments at the Dana Farber in Boston.  CT scans at our February visit indicated very good progress – the Doctor showed us impressive side by side comparison views with scans from last September.  So our next visit to Boston is not until June and I am thru taking the long infusions – four daily pills with will continue until fall.

Hope all of you are able to deal with the coronavirus challenges well – we are fortunate to be able to do our work outside our front door.

 

PRUNING IS UNDERWAY

We are taking advantage of any days when the weather is reasonable to get some pruning done.  There are good fruit buds on the trees as we start a new crop year.

November and December have been busy with continued weekly trips for chemo at the Dana Farber Cancer Institute in Boston.  My SSL (small lymphocytic lymphoma) is responding well and I continue to tolerate the treatments ok.  We are now down to monthly trips.  Our two daughters (and their families) who live in Walpole MA have provided lots of help with transportation and a place to stay.

Today we enjoying a beautiful fresh six inch  snowfall while watching the woodstove and celebrating almost 21 years back in Vermont.  Pruning will resume when the sun comes out.

 

 

LAST MOWING BEFORE WINTER

We are taking advantage of some beautiful weather to mow the orchard one more time, reducing cover for mice and voles to minimize damage to the tree trunks over the winter.

As some of you know, I had an “incidental finding” of a slow  growing non-Hodgkins lymphoma (SLL) in the CT scans after my Halloween accident last year.  The doctors said the watch and wait period is over and I have successfully completed three rounds of immunotherapy – several more weekly rounds and then six monthly rounds still to come.   The long term prognosis is good.   I am tolerating the treatment well and still able to get work done around the orchard – never a dull moment.

Hope all of you are  still enjoying some of this year’s apples.

END OF A GOOD SEASON

We had great weather for our windup weekend – finished off a very good season.  Yesterday at the end of the day people were still coming out with apples, but today when we walked the entire orchard, virtually all the apples were picked – the most complete harvest in memory.

So now it is quiet again on our hilltop and we are  putting tractors and equipment back in the barn, getting the orchard ready for winter with one more mowing, taking down signs, cleaning the donut fryer, draining the pipes in the red house and more.

Thanks for making it a good season – put us on your calendars for next fall !!

LAST WEEKEND – COME GET YOUR APPLES

Tomorrow (Friday the 11’th) we open up our late ripening varieties – Crimson Crisp, Golden Delicious, and Northern Spy – these trees are young and the crops are small,  so they will get picked out quickly.

There are still good McIntosh, Courtland, Macoun and Empire and a limited number of Galas.  Good drops at 1/2 price.

There will be cider (until it runs out) and donuts on Saturday & Sunday – picture shows granddaughter Katie, a member of the donut team.

Sunday will be our last day for the season –  help us windup the harvest. !!