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

Mid September Update

As I sit here updating the website tonight with two layers of sweatshirts on and my thick fuzzy slippers,  I wonder what is going on with this weather?  Brrr…and I am avoiding turning on the heat, it just doesn’t seem right to have it on in September.   We just hope there will not be an early hard frost before we can finish our fall harvest.     Here’s what is going on at Corey Lake Orchards:

Cider:  Yes, we successfully made our 2nd pressing this afternoon.  Thanks to the many people who helped us with our equipment issues and got us going again: my son Jay, my husband Joe, our brandy maker Bruce, and the rest of the team here at the orchard who helped pull it all together.    We sampled it coming off the press tonight and declared it “delightful.”  It is a blend of Gala, McIntosh, Mollies Delicious, JonaMac, Honeycrisp and Jonagold.    Free samples available at the market for you to try.   Reminder:  Our cider is not pasteurized, it is the “real” thing.

Apple Dumplings are Back:  Our bakers will have their famous apple dumplings available on Friday, Saturday and Sunday.  If  you have never tried these, it is a must!

Picked or U-Pick apples in the market:  We now have Mollie’s Delicious, Gala, Jon-a-Mac and McIntosh apples for sale in the market.   You may also pick these four kinds.

  • Mollie’s Delicious is a large, sweet eating apple.  It is a late summer apple and this will probably be the last weekend for them.
  • Gala is a great eating and cooking apple.  It has a crisp snappy bite over a mellow sweetness.
  • Jon-A-Mac:  This is a good cooking or eating apple.  It has all of the best qualities of a Jonathan apple and a McIntosh.
  • McIntosh:  This is the “real” old fashioned McIntosh.  It has a white flesh, is very juicy, slightly tart and smells wonderful.  Great for applesauce or making apple juice.

Available in the market, already picked are:  (Not for U-Pick)

  • Honeycrisp:  Very crisp, excellent sweet flavor with a great bite.

A 20-bushel bin of Honeycrisp just picked!

  • Jonagold: This is a large, crisp juicy apple, both tart and sweet.  We do not have a lot of these this year, so if this is your favorite, call us to reserve them for you.  269-244-5690.

Large and lovely Jonagold apples on the tree

  • Nu-Red:  This is a hard, crunchy, sweet/sour eating apple, that has become my personal favorite.

Fall apples:  The remainder of the fall apples are not ready yet.   Yes, we know it seems late, but they simply are late.  We anticipate opening the remainder of the fall apples around 9-23 for U-Pick.  The cool weather continues to slow things down and we want to make sure the apples are ripe and at full flavor.   We have lots of apples this year, so there will be plenty when we open for picking.   So please let them enjoy a little more time on the tree.  The fall apples that will be available to pick are:

  1. Cameo
  2. Cortland
  3. Fuji
  4. Jonathan
  5. Mutsu
  6. Ida Red
  7. Red Delicious
  8. Red Rome
  9. Northern Spys
  10. Golden Delicious

For a description of these and all of the apples that we grow, please go to the apple listing on our website:  http://www.coreylakeorchards.com/seasonal-offerings/apples/

Grape Update:    The white Niagara grapes will open for U-Pick on Friday, September 16th.    We anticipate the purple Concords opening around 9-23, again, depending on the weather.    The grapes will be 25 cents/pound to pick, if you pick over 100 pounds, they will be 20 cents a pound.

When you come to pick grapes, please bring the following if you have them:

  1. Five gallon plastic pails to pick in, this is how we measure how much you pick instead of having to weigh them all.   A five-gallon pail (which is about a 1/2 bushel) weights 20 pounds.  If you don’t have these, you can borrow ours, but bring containers to take them home in.
  2. Scissors or clippers to cut them with.
  3. Small wagons to help you get them out of the vineyard (our rows are very long!)

Here are answers to the most frequently asked questions about grape picking:

Can I wait and pick the white grapes when I come for the purple concords?  Yes.  We are reserving a block of white grapes for that purpose.

How long will the grapes last?  Once we open, we are anticipate several weeks, but that depends on how many customers come out and how many grapes they pick.

What hours is U-Pick open?  We open at 8 am and close at 6 pm.  We ask that you be finished picking by 6 pm.

Can I pick apples and grapes together?  It looks like our apples will be ready to pick at the same time as the Concord grapes.  So yes, save room to pick apples to take home as well.

Fruit:   This is the last few days for watermelon and peaches.

Tomatoes:  We are still trying to pick tomatoes for everyone who wanted them.  If you haven’t got on our list, please call us at 269-244-5690.     This week as I was unloading a bin of tomatoes, I got to the last few only to find a friendly frog waiting for me!

Friendly frog in the bottom of the tomato bin

Winter Squash:  We have acorn, butternut. buttercup and sweet dumpling squash ready now.

Fall Ornamentals:  We have a good selection of gourds, small white and orange pumpkins to decorate with and some beautiful mums.

Brandy House:  The Brandy house will be open for tasting and tours on Saturday, from 1 – 4.  Bruce would love to see you.  He has been busy trying to make peach brandy this week.

Thanks again for buying local, we hope to see you soon.

Beth and everyone at Corey Lake Orchards