Posts Tagged ‘fruit trees’


Posted on May 10th, 2012 by Tonia 2 Comments

Our cherry and pear trees exploded today with blossoms!

I can’t wait to eat the delicious fruit from these trees, but in the meantime they ain’t so bad on the eyes.

The weather has been faaaaantaaaastic here lately- bright blue sky, glorious sunshine and a nice cool breeze. We’re knocking a bunch of homestead To Do’s off the list: building a deluxe turkey/chicken duplex, planting onions and potatoes in the garden, planting more baby fruit trees in the orchard, and mowing the lawn. It’s a total joy to be outside working! Ahhhh, spring.

Cherries up the Wahzoo.

Posted on July 28th, 2011 by Tonia 7 Comments

It’s cherry-pickin’ time ’round here! The big mature sour-cherry tree and the little sapling got ripe at the exact same time, so yesterday we spent our whole afternoon harvesting from the two.

Why Mike got to pick from the short tree and I had to pick from the tall tree, I have no clue.

They’re really sour right off the tree, but they make delicious preserves with a little sugar. We pitted them, mashed them just a little bit- leaving plenty of chunks- and cooked them down {about four parts cherries to one part sugar, and a dash of fresh lemon juice} until the consistency seemed right. Success! It’s sweet and tangy and has that certain-summery-something that cherries have.

It’s amazing how much fruit the two trees produced, even considering that some of it had already been snuck away by critters. Someday we’ll have a couple dozen cherry trees to harvest from! And it will be glorious.

Adventures in Jam Making, part one

Posted on July 14th, 2011 by Tonia 8 Comments

Yesterday we got up bright and early and headed to Bayfield, a beautiful little town known for its plethora of apple and cherry orchards and berry patches.

Bayfield is situated just so on the peninsula that it’s basically incubated by Lake Superior and the growing season is a whole zone better than it is at our house, just 12 miles to the south. Hence, fruit-growers have flocked to the area and set up shop on every south-facing slope that could be found.

The whole town is full of picturesque orchards {most with ancient, twisted, gnarly rootstocks that have been re-grafted onto many times in their life.} It’s a pretty magical place. We’re lucky to live so near to it, yet far enough away that we’re not quite so bombarded with tourists all summer long.

Anyway, our mission in Bayfield was to pick strawberries, and we chose Northwind Farm because they grow organically and because the farm and homestead is 100% powered by the wind and sun. Even the car has a solar-panel.

The owner, Tom, showed us to a patch ripe for picking and set us loose.

It was pretty glorious out there in the early morning sun, the smell of strawberry hanging in the air, the chickens clucking away behind us, and the crickets singing.

In fact, it was down-right romantic! I love working quietly away at the same task with Mike. We’re both in our element when our hands and minds are busy yet we’re relaxed…not in a rush to be somewhere else or do something else; not thinking about the To Do list at home. Something about the smell of strawberries is romantic, too.

We picked almost 20 lbs. and then moseyed home to begin the jam making {oh, if only we had known at that point how incredibly unprepared we were for how much work jam making is!}

To be continued

Getting Fruity

Posted on July 11th, 2011 by Tonia 1 Comment

Exciting things are happening around the homestead this week in the form of little fruities, getting bigger and more delicious-looking every day!

It won’t be long before we’ll be making cherry and apple deserts!…That is, if Mike will stop eating all of the almost-ripe-ones to “test if they’re ready”.