Friday, August 27, 2021

Late Summer Update

As August draws to a close, it's already starting to feel a little like fall in the orchard. Our thoughts are beginning to turn to the fall fruit harvest. Once again, we will welcome our friends and neighbors from throughout the greater Alberton area to come and pick fruit when it's ready. Watch for notifications on our Facebook page when it's time to pick. For most of the fruit, it will be about another month before it's ripe.
Please note that starting this year we are requiring free picking permits to harvest fruit from the orchard. A free permit will automatically be sent to your email address when you fill out this form. [Edit 11/3/21: This link has been taken down because the 2021 picking season is now over. See you all next year!] We will issue permits in person to anyone without email or Internet access if they simply stop by the house and ask. You may wonder why we're requiring a permit. There are two reasons. Since we can't be at the orchard all the time, we would like to know who is using the orchard and when. This is important to address liability issues and for assessment in case of any damage to the orchard. We would also simply like to know how much fruit the orchard is supplying to the local community. As we begin to apply for grants to improve the orchard, it would be nice to be able to quantify the positive impact the orchard is having on the community.

The exceptionally hot, dry summer we had this year had an impact on fruit production. Although there is still plenty of fruit, the apples and pears are smaller than normal. We are also getting a lot of natural dropping of the fruit. If anyone would like to pick this windfallen fruit up off the ground for use by their pigs or other animals, feel free to come and get as much as you like, no permit required. This is helpful to us by reducing the attraction to bears.

Finally, we would like to thank ECHO, Inc. for donating a new string trimmer (aka weed whacker) to the orchard. The old weed whacker used for decades by Norman Brovold (pictured, age 92) is worn out, and ECHO graciously filled a need. We appreciate their help, and we suggest you consider their products when you're shopping for new outdoor equipment.






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