Hi loyal readers,
Hope you enjoyed your freestone peaches last week. Only one or two weeks left of the season.
Happy to say, it’s been a long season, since it now starts in late June. That’s a dramatic change, and it’s thanks to breeding in recent years that has given us several varieties that ripen both much earlier and later than when we started marketing local peaches.
Sad to see those peaches go, but now we’ll start focusing on apples. In fact this past week we had the first of the new crop of apples. It always starts with two varieties, Redfree and Gingergold, which we’ll have several more times, then it’s Honeycrisp and so many others. The apple harvest is underway and keeps going until the end of October. And apple cider soon starts in late September.
I’ve been getting a lot of questions about how this unusual weather is affecting us. It has been very unusually rainy. In the month of July, when we often have a drought, this year we had over 11 inches of rain, and we’ve had over four inches so far in August.
Thanks to some great luck we did not have flooded fields, but when it’s cloudy so often and the soil is wet all the time it has bed effects on the crops. Plant diseases run rampant, especially on tomatoes.
This doesn’t mean that we have no tomatoes, but we’re forced to discard a much larger percentage because of blemishes, spots etc. Still, the flavor of the ones I’ve been eating has been excellent, and I do consume huge numbers of tomatoes, my favorite food (kohlrabi being a close second).
I especially recommend the heirloom varieties such as Brandywine and the yellow Valencia. But the standard hybrid tomatoes this year have had great flavor too, better than many past years.
That’s cuz we’re always trying to perfect our balance of fertility in the tomato ground. The perfect mix of macronutrients and trace elements is the key, and it’s so difficult to achieve! But worth the effort if you’re a nut about tomato flavor as I am.
Hope you enjoy some great tomato sandwiches this week. See you Saturday.