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. !!

STILL GOOD APPLES

Good weather this week – weekend may be more cloudy – drizzle on Sunday?  There are good Macintosh on the old trees way up in the corner – see photo.  Good Empire, Cortland and Macoun down the hill.  Cider during the week – donuts on the weekend.  Drops are 1/2 price.

Late ripening varieties – Crimson Crisp, Golden Delicious, and Nortern Spy will start on Friday – crop is small and they will pick out quickly.  Our last day will be Sunday Oct 13.  Come get your last apples for the season !!

NEXT TO LAST WEEKEND – EMPIRES NOW AVAILABLE

Empires are now ready – see photo.  McIntosh, Cortland, Gala and Macoun in good supply (but not as many as earlier in the season).  Weather forecast is for good apple picking weather.  Saturday looks to be sunnier than Sunday.

The donut team will be back in action – donuts tend to run out by mid afternoon.  Last weekend they made 1500 donuts.  We will have hot and cold cider by the cup, as well 1/2 gallon and 1 gallon jugs while our supply lasts.

Next weekend ( Saturday  October 12 & Sunday October 13 ) will be the end of our harvest season.  Late ripening  varieties –  Crimson Crisp, Northern Spy & Golden Delicious will open for picking on Friday October 11 – all have fairly small crops and they will get picked out rapidly.

Come get your next round of apples !!

MORE GOOD APPLES

Another very good weekend – many happy customers – they picked lots of apples, ate 1500 donuts and cleaned out our cider.

We  have resupplied our cider from Dutton’s – there will be donuts on Saturday and Sunday.  A lot of good fruit was picked, but there are still good McIntosh, Cortland, Gala and Macoun out there.

There is a good crop of Empires that we will start  by the weekend.  The photo shows some Monarch butterflies enjoying the New England Asters in the meadow.  Come during the week for a peaceful orchard – come on the weekend for donuts and excited laughter.  We may run out of donuts by mid afternoon on a very busy day.

LOTS OF APPLES STILL AVAILABLE

We are gearing up for another weekend – our daughter Laura has come up from North Carolina to help out.  There are plenty of McIntosh, Cortland, Gala and Macoun.  Honeycrisp are picked out.

Cider is back in stock.  The donut crew is ready to fire up on Saturday & Sunday.  The wooden apple is out in the orchard waiting to be found to win the IPad.

It is a rainy afternoon today – weather forecast is sunny for Friday, Saturday morning and Sunday.  Come help us bring in the harvest.

Photos shows some beautiful Galas and the wooden apple!!

 

 

Good supply of McIntosh, Cortland, Gala, and Macoun

Very busy weekend with beautiful weather  – saw lots of familiar faces.  Most of the Honeycrisps were picked – there are still good McIntosh, Cortland, Gala, and Macoun – the few remaining Honeycrisps are  well down the hill and will probably be picked out before the weekend.

The donut crew made 1300 donuts total on the weekend and sold them all.  They say firmly that donuts are only available on Saturday and Sunday (1 1/2 hour clean up).  People who buy donuts buy a lot of cider – we ran out Sunday afternoon, but are now resupplied.

The wooden apple is still out in the orchard waiting to be found – finder gets an IPad mini 4.

Come see us during the week and enjoy a peaceful orchard without the crowd or come for apples (and donuts) on the weekend.!!!

BIG WEEKEND FOR APPLE PICKING

Saturday we will open up picking for Honeycrisp, Cortland, Macoun, Fuji, and Blondee. Cortland and Macoun have a nice crop – Fuji is limited and there is a small crop on our young Blondee trees.

There continue to be good Mcintosh and Gala.  Zestar, Ginger Gold and Sansa are picked out.  The Honeycrisp crop is only moderate this year, so we will hold to the Saturday start to be fair to everyone who  waited for them to get ripe

There will be more cider and Mad Tom donuts (Saturday & Sunday only)  – the donut making crew is perfecting the process.

The wooden apple will be out in the orchard by Saturday morning – the finder will win an iPad mini 4.

The photos show a young Honeycrisp tree with some ripe fruit and the wooden apple – go find some nice apples and the wooden one!!


 

 

 

 

 

GREAT WEEK FOR APPLE PICKING

We had a very good weekend – lots of happy customers – they picked out the remaining Zestars, Sansas and Ginger Golds.

There are good Gala and McIntosh this week.  Saturday Sept 21 we will start Honeycrisp and Cortland – possibly Macoun and Fuji.

To make it fair for everyone, we will not start Honeycrisp before Saturday, even if your Grandmother has a toothache. The Honeycrisp crop is less than last year, but it should last until the 28’th, unless we get extremely large turnout this coming weekend.

Picture shows some very nice Galas – Macs are plentiful too.

MORE GOOD APPLES – plus donuts & cider

A few Zestars and Sansas are left – good supply of Ginger Gold McIntosh and Gala.  If you want Zestars, now is the time to get them – they will be gone by the end of the weekend.   The donut crew is getting ready to fire up for the weekend.  Come help us bring in the harvest!!

 

 

LOTS OF GOOD APPLES !!

Our opening weekend was very good – we saw lots of familiar folks – learning how to make donuts has gone well and we will have them on the weekends.

Currently Zestar, Ginger Gold, Sansa, McIntosh and Gala are available for picking.  Zestars will  probably be mostly picked out by the weekend.  McIntosh are plentiful and tart.  Good supply of Gala and Ginger Gold as well.

Sunflowers are late this year – same as the apples.  Come see us while the picking is prime!!

 

COME SEE US THIS WEEKEND

We will have Zestar, Ginger Gold, Sansa , McIntosh ( a little tart ), and Gala available for picking on our opening day Saturday September 7.  Overall the crop is not as plentiful as last year, but there are lots of good apples.  The recent rain has helped the fruit gain size.

We anticipate Honeycrisp, Cortland, Macoun  and Blondee to be ready to pick on September 21 & 22 weekend.

Mrs. Murphy’s,  our donut supplier for twenty years is no longer able to supply us because they are having difficulty getting enough help – SO we have taken the plunge and purchased a donut robot, large mixer and many assorted items which are now set up in the kitchen of the Red House adjacent to the barn.  We have successfully completed some trial runs and if all goes well we will have Mad Tom Donuts this weekend as well as local cider

Weather looks perfect for apple picking.  Look forward to seeing you.

 

ON TARGET FOR OPENING SATURDAY SEPTEMBER 7

Opening day will be Saturday September 7.  As usual, we will be open 9:00 to 5:30 – closed Mondays. Two recent rains of over 1.5 inches will help the fruit size increase over the next three weeks.

We have been busy getting lots of mowing done – we mow several times during the year to to reduce competition of the grass with the trees for water and nutrients. The picture shows our big German hydraulically controlled mower which automatically swings the outboard rotor back when it senses a tree – this allows us to eliminate any use of herbicides (Round-Up) in the orchard and greatly reduces the amount of string trimmer use.

As we complete the mowing, the next big task is to move all the equipment out of the barn and get it set up for sales. Look forward to seeing you soon!!

APPLE PICKING WILL PROBABLY START ON SATURDAY SEPTEMBER 7

The season is late this year and Labor Day is early, so apple picking will probably start on Saturday September 7 (weekend after Labor Day)  with Zestars, Ginger Golds and Sansas and possibly some tart Macintosh.  The crop this year overall is not as big as last year, but there will still be a reasonable supply of apples – more Macintosh and Cortland – fewer Honeycisp.

Watch the web site for most current info – photo shows some Zestars approaching 2 inches in size.

Put us on your fall calendar!!

APPLES ARE GROWING WELL

The apples are now up to about an inch and a half in size – the picture shows some on the old MacIntosh trees. The crop overall this year will probably be a medium sized one – not as many apples as last year or 2015, but if the weather cooperates, there will be good apples.

The rain has made the grass grow rapidly as well as the apples, so we are busy mowing and thinning a few trees that are overset.

Remember – no more raspberries and cherries – see the raspberries and cherries section on the web page for details and alternate sources.

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.

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