12147 Corey Lake Road, Three Rivers, Michigan (269) 244-5690

Monthly Archive: August 2011

Update for last week of August

As we head into the last week of August, several days of cool weather have already hinted that Fall is not far away.   We’re getting prepared since fall is when we have our largest harvests of apples and grapes.  We’re excited that both the apples and grape crops look so good, both of them will be “fun” to pick this year.

Apples thick on the trees, 8-25-11

Summer Apples:  This weekend we will have a nice selection of summer apples for you to choose from:   Molly’s Delicious, Gala, Jon-a-Mac and Earli-blaze.   Good for fresh eating and cooking, come sample to see which one you like best. We have bushels of Earli-blaze available,($18/bushel)  they are a wonderful pie apple and won’t last long on the market.  Call us if you want us to reserve some for you.  269-244-5690.

Summer vegetables:   The summer vegetables are tapering off, so we are only bringing in a few summer squash, zucchini and cucumbers each day, they will probably be done by Labor Day.  We still have plenty of peppers, green beans, eggplant and hope to have sweet corn (Stears) available through Labor Day weekend.

Melons:  Cantaloupes will be coming to an end in about a week, they have been really good this year, so come out and get a few more while you can.  We have lots of seeded watermelon available.  All of our melons are “guaranteed.”    If you ever get one that wasn’t to your liking, please let us know and we will replace it or refund your money.

Onions:  The sweet onions we have hung to dry are now dry enough to put in mesh bags. Each bag weighs between 8 – 9 pounds.    Yellow and white onions are $7/bag and the red onions are $8/bag.

Peaches:  We are finishing up the Red Haven peaches and are now picking a nice freestone called Reliance.  We should have a pretty good picking of them this weekend, so we will try to offer them in 1/4 bushels (pecks) as well as by the pound.

Bartlett Pears:  We expect to start picking the pears on Monday, August 29th.  They will be $20 a bushel.    If you have not placed your order for these yet, please call the market at 269-244-5690.  For those who have ordered, we will start calling you when they are ready for you to pick up.  Please bring your own containers to put them in when you come.

Bartlett pears, 8-25-11

Red Potatoes:  This year we seem to have more potatoes than we expected, so we are offering them in bushels for $25.00.  A bushel of potatoes weighs between 50 and 60 pounds.    Please call ahead to order these if you would like them so we can dig them for you.  269-244-5690.

Tomatoes:  The U-Pick tomatoes are coming, really they are.  Hopefully we will open sometime this coming week,  Check with us around September 1st for an update.  They will be $12/bushel to pick, the same price as last year.

Homemade Baked Goods:  Since last weekend’s offerings of fresh peach pie and Earli-blaze apple pie were such a hit, they will both be back this weekend.   Also, our bakers are trying a new item:  whole wheat bread and 12-grain bread.

Pictures are back, thanks to my son for giving me his camera that I gave him!

Thanks again for buying local,

Beth and everyone at Corey Lake Orchards

 

Mid August Update

Welcome Racers:  We want to welcome all of the racers and volunteers participating in the Three Rivers Triathlon/Duathlon on Saturday, August 20th.  Good luck to each of you and know that when you are finished, there will be fresh apples, watermelon and canteloupe provided by Corey Lake Orchards to refresh you.    You are welcome to participate in our own sporting event if you choose:

  • Duathlon:  Pick a bushel of tomatoes, then carry two large watermelon at a time from the field to the waiting tractor.
  • Triathlon:  Pick a bushel of tomatoes, then carry two large watermelon at a time from the field to the waiting tractor, dig one bushel of potatoes (we will loan you the shovel) and carry them into the market for us!!

Summer Apples:  We have two great summer apples on the market right now.  Jersey Macs and Earli-blaze.  They are both excellent for eating or cooking.  We have samples of each for you to try to see which you like best.   They are available by the bushel, peck, 1/2 peck of pound. For those of you who love the Jersey Mac, this is the last weekend for them. so hurry over.

Baked goods:  Our bakers are offering fresh peach pie this week (because it is finally peach season!!) andfresh apple pie made out of our Earli-blaze apples.   I can personally attest to both of these pies being delicious.  Of course the bakers say it is because of their crust, I say it is because of our fruit.    You decide….

Watermelons are here:  We started bringing in watermelon today.   These are the real thing: Crimson Sweet (striped round with seeds) or Charleston Grey (long green oblong with seeds.)  Sorry, we don’t grow any seedless watermelon as we find seeded watermelon so much tastier.

Canteloupe:   The canteloupe must have loved this summer’s weather, as they are really nice this year, and so sweet.    We have three sizes:  Medium, Large and Extra-large (and even we are shocked by the size of the extra large!)  The season is at its peak right now and won’t last much longer so come out and get some.

Peaches:  We still have Red Haven peaches, available in small eating quantities only, no bushels.  We have a very small peach orchard since we took out a peach orchard last fall.

Sweet Corn:  Our own sweet corn is now gone for the season, but we will be bringing in Stears Sweet corn (white and bi-color) hopefully through Labor Day weekend.

Greenhouse Tomatoes:    We finished taking out the greenhouse this week,  a huge thank you to all of our customers who have faithfully bought greenhouse tomatoes from us since April.  We have a few left to sell, plus all of the remaining green tomatoes we are selling for 50 cents a pound, this is the time to make fried green tomatoes!!

U-Pick Field Tomatoes We are having a very difficult tomato growing year based on a number of field conditions and the weather, beginning with the spring planting.    We had to replant them several times this spring,  which is one of the reasons causing them to be late.    The extremely hot/humid weather in July caused excessive mold/mildew.  Now some of the plants have developed late blight.    There are good years and bad years in farming; and with last year’s tomato crop being so good, this year’s is disappointing.  However,  we still have good tomatoes, with the same great flavor that you are used to getting from us.

Given the need to continue to take care of the tomato plants and keep them as healthy as possible as the tomatoes ripen, we have decided we must postpone U-Pick until at least some time in September.  Knowing our customers are anxious to start canning tomatoes, we will pick them and offer “field tomato seconds” at the same price you could have picked them for: $12 a bushel.  A field tomato “second” is simply a “not so perfect tomato.”   It might have a crack, a skin mark where the tomato touched the wet ground, or be mis-shaped.  These are perfect for canning, you will just have a little extra work to cut some of the spots out.     If you would like these, please call and give us your name, phone number, and quantity desired (limit of 3 bushels per customer until we get everyone some tomatoes).  We will call you as soon as we can get them for you.  269-244-5690.

We will still have tomatoes to pick once we open the U-Pick in September, for $12/bushel.  Check back at the very end of August to see if we have an opening date.  We have about  80  plants that we put in late, which have not even started turning red yet!  So far, these plants are large and beautiful, have not been affected by the blight and are producing lots of tomatoes, if you can just be patient and let them grow and ripen!!  Your patience and support of this change is appreciated as we work through this problem.

Other vegetables on the market:  onions, red potatoes, various kinds of peppers, summer squash, spaghetti squash, cucumbers, eggplant, green beans, cabbage, kale and collard greens.

Brandy House:  The brandy house will be open on Saturday from 1 – 4 for tasting and to learn about how we make brandy.

Fall apples and grapes:  We have a good crop of both this year and will have them available for U-Pick and picked in the market.  They are going to be late this year by about 10 days to two weeks.  Check back the week of September 5th for an update on how they are progressing.

Sorry, no pictures again as my camera has still not turned up from being lost.    I still think it got lost picking corn, if you happened to find a camera in your dozen of corn, please let me know!

Thanks as always for buying local goods and produce.

Beth and everyone else at Corey Lake Orchards

 

 

 

 

 

 

So where are the peaches and U-Pick tomatoes??

So where are the peaches and U-Pick tomatoes?? We wish we knew!  Both are taking forever to get ready.    Even despite the hot/humid days of July, most of the fruit here and in the rest of the state is running about 2 weeks late.    We know it is hard to be patient when you want a taste of a fresh peach, just picked!

Peaches:  We will start picking a few Red Haven peaches this weekend.  We will NOT have these by the bushel, but in small quantities only: 4-lb boxes for fresh eating.  Because the peaches are late, we expect to have them for about a month once they start.    We will not be bringing in very many each day until they get riper, so please call the market to make sure we have some or have us save them for you, before you drive out.  269-244-5690.

Tomatoes:  We are bringing in quite a few field tomatoes now and are finishing up our greenhouse tomatoes.  As we close out the greenhouse, we have lots of green tomatoes for sale at a “close out” price of $7 a half bushel.  This is the time to make fried green tomatoes or green tomato salsa!   U-Pick tomatoes:  Because we want the tomatoes to be ripe and plentiful, it is going to be at least another week or 10 days before we open the U-Pick tomatoes.  They will be the same price as last year:  $12/bushel.  So, Please check back about August 22nd.  Sorry!

Homemade Baked Goods:  This weekend our bakers have brought two new cookie types.  I was allowed to sample each today, Yum!  The first is a new cookie they have:  zucchini chocolate chip cookies!  They are amazing, especially with a good cup of coffee.  The other is their normal sugar cookie, but this week in apple shapes with faces.

Bartlett Pears:  We have a good crop of Bartlett pears coming, but not as many as last year.  They will probably be ripe the last week of August.  If you would like some, please call us and get your name on our list and we will call you when they are available.  We want to make sure all of our customers get the pears they want as it is getting more difficult to find pears in the State of Michigan, (just not many growers), so we have many other markets which would like to buy them from us if we have any left over.    Call us at 269-244-5690, let us know your name, phone number and how many bushel you would like.

Fruit on the market now: Jersey Mac apples and melons (blueberries are gone for the year.)

Vegetables on the market now:  sweet corn, onions, red potatoes, various kinds of peppers, summer squash, zucchini,  cucumbers, eggplant, green beans, October or cranberry beans, kale, and collard greens.

Brandy Tasting:  It is open every Saturday from 1 – 4.  Please come out and visit with Bruce and try some brandy or our wine.

Sorry, no pictures of the farm this time, I have lost my camera…..I know it will turn up somewhere (maybe in the bottom of a bushel of corn?)

Thanks, as always, for buying local.

Beth and everyone at Corey Lake Orchards

Happy August

Finally, a break from the heat and humidity that took its toll on everyone and our crops too.   Even the “hot weather” crops seemed to rebel!!   The largest problem this has caused is  our fruit/vegetables molding/spoiling due to the hot-wet conditions.  We absolutely want to make sure we always give you a fresh-top-quality product, so we are doing our best to sort this out, but this weather has been so difficult that things spoil quickly or we might miss something.  If you ever get something here you are not happy with, please let us know and we will make sure to make it right with you on your next visit.

Fruit:  We still have blueberries and hope to have for about another week.  Our melons (canteloupe) are just starting to come in.   We are starting to pick Jersey Mac Apples which are good for eating fresh or cooking.  We will have a very good apple coming in about a week called Earli-blaze, which is excellent for cooking (especially pie) and eating.

What’s coming for fruit? Some peaches will hopefully be ready in about a week to ten days.  Peaches are late this year because we took out one of our early peach orchards last fall, so we only have midseason and late peaches this year.  We have a small crop this year of Stanley prune plums, check back around August 20th for ripening update.  We have a good crop of Bartlett pears this year, check back with us around August 22 for availability.

Peaches ripening on August 6, have color but not size yet....

Fall crops:    Many of you are beginning to ask about apples and grapes.    As of right now, we have a good crop of both.  We will keep you updated in these emails on when each variety of apples is ready as well as grapes, but we won’t have much information until September.   We will have U-Pick on both of these crops.

Preview of fall apples, 8-6-11

Preview of fall grapes, 8-6-11

 

 

 

 

 


 

Vegetables:  We have plenty of vegetables, especially sweet corn right now!    We are waiting for the next planting of green beans to come in, so probably will not have more green beans until about August 17th or so.  We have started picking October or “cranberry” beans.  This is a bean that must be shelled out, like a pinto bean.  We fix a large pot of these every week when they are in season, they are Mr. Hubbard’s favorite meal.

Tomatoes:  Everybody is anxious for U-Pick tomatoes.  They are coming on slowly, but check back around August 13th and hopefully we will have a starting date by then and price.

Onions:  We have all of our onions harvested now for the year.  We had to pull them earlier than we would have wanted due to the heat and humidity.     They are still drying but can be purchased now “on the string.”   There are 4 varieties, all sweet.  All of the white and yellow onions are 80 cents per pound “on the string.”  The red onions are $1.00 per pound “on the string.”

  • Yellow Sweet Spanish
  • White Sweet Spanish
  • Candy (Sweet yellow onion, very large)
  • Mars (Red, sweet onion)

Getting large quantities for canning/freezing:  If you need large quantities for canning or freezing of anything we grow, please call the market and we will take your name/number and how many you want and call you when/if we can get those for you and give you pricing.

The Humming Bird garden:  A large bird has appeared in the hummingbird garden, which is certainly not in the hummingbird family.    Maybe it will help harvest the sunflowers which have grown to record height and will require a ladder to be picked!!

As always, thanks for supporting us by buying local produce and goods.

Beth and everyone at Corey Lake Orchards!