Last Saturday’s Apricot U-Pick mustered an impressive turnout even though temperatures reached the lower 90’s. I was “all smiles” to suddenly have dozens of enthusiastic helping hands lessen the harvest load. Judging from the amount of fruit left on the trees and the final tally of sales, an estimated 1000lbs got picked by members.
I am glad we held the U-Pick last Saturday, when most of the trees still had an abundance of fruit. The warm weather is quickly ripening all the remaining Apricots, two weeks early, and we will be busy trying to keep up with the harvest.
Unfortunately after this week there will be little fruit left on the trees, which means we won’t be holding a second U-pick. After waiting for 4 years the Apricots have “come and gone” all too quickly. Soon we’ll only remember them preserved in a jar as jam. My hope is we don’t have to wait another 4 years before we can enjoy them again at their best –fresh, ripe, straight off the tree.
Given the Blenheim’s uncertain track record my friend Billy, a longtime farmer in this valley, half jokingly commented that it would be a good time to pull all the Apricot trees and cut my losses before I keep investing more time and resources. I certainly won’t do that, yet Billy brings up a good point of how to assign value to farming and the crops we grow.
Our regular farm events always remind me that, beyond the profit and loss analysis, there is value in experiencing the pleasure of real food when we get to smell, touch, and taste it right there in the field or orchard where it’s growing. This pleasure value is often difficult if not impossible to quantify. It is the small, often spontaneous experiences, which manifest when we harvest, cook, eat or just simply spend time, alone or as a community, connecting with the nourishing soil under our feet.
Thank you for coming out and making this another enjoyable Live Earth Farm event.