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

Monthly Archive: April 2012

End of April Update

Another month almost gone and what strange weather we have seen.    We would normally be very busy with our field plantings around this time, but the weather has us in a holding pattern.

Update on Frost Damage:  Unfortunately we have had some damage to our fruit crops.  Among the worst hit are pears, tart cherries, and plums.  There is minor damage beginning to show up on grapes, apples, sweet cherries, peaches, and strawberries. For those of you who can, freeze and make jellies/jams, you may want to ration your items in case you can’t replenish this year.  As most of you probably know, the entire state of Michigan has been hit very hard with frost damage in the fruit belt.  We really won’t know the extent of the damage for a few more weeks as the fruit tries to “set” and we can see what really made it.   Many of you who have driven past our strawberry field in the mornings have wondered what we are doing with our sprinklers going….it is how we protect them from frost damage.  Many thanks to Jay who is the one who stays up during these frosty nights to watch over our greenhouse and keep the irrigation going.

 

Irrigating strawberry plants through the night to protect them from frost damage

Asparagus Update: Due to the cold nights,  there is very little asparagus growing right now.    Please call us at 269-244-5690 to see if we have any left before you drive out or order in advance so we can save it for you.  Based on the weather forecast, we hope to pick again at the beginning of the week.

Tomato Plants:  We have tomato plants available now in our market.  If you would like some this year,  but you are not quite ready for them yet, please call us at 269-244-5690 or email us so we can save them for you.  Due to the storm out east, we are supplementing a greenhouse in Pennsylvania that lost their plants.  We would like to make sure our customers get the plants they want as many of you like the variety of tomato plants that we have.  The types of tomato plants available are:  Biltmore, Rocky Top, Scarlett Red, Mountain Fresh, Mountain Glory, Red Defender, and cherry and grape tomatoes.

Cold Crop Plants:  We still have cold crop plants for sale.  These are plants that you can plant right away and not have to worry about the cold weather.  These include; Brussel Sprouts, Broccoli, Cauliflower, Kale, Lettuce, Shallots, and Spinach.  We still have seed potatoes for sale in the market.

Other vegetable plants:  We will have other vegetable plants later and hanging flower baskets, check with us mid-May.

Brown Eggs:  We are pleased to announce that Norma and David Yoder, from Leonidas, will be selling their farm-fresh, grass-fed chicken eggs at our market this summer.  They will have  Pullet eggs (pullet eggs are from chickens that are just beginning to lay, so the eggs are a little smaller) or  regular-large eggs.  They would very much like any egg cartons you have, so please help by bringing them back.

Rhubarb:  If the weather cooperates, we hope to have rhubarb this coming week.

Ruth’s famous pecan and cashew brittle is back, along with local honey!!  Come stock up!

Here’s hoping that we can soon get some “normal” weather back.  Have a great weekend.

Beth and everyone at Corey Lake Orchards

 

A challenge to you for Earth Day! Plant a tomato.

Sunday, April 22nd is Earth Day, the day set aside each year for all of us to pause and ask ourselves what we are personally doing to protect our world, our environment and the earth upon which we walk.   Often times people think that our job as farmers is raising and caring for the crops we grow.  But in fact, our real job is caring for this precious ground we have been entrusted with.  Because if we can take care of the soil and all of nature surrounding it, the farming part becomes a whole lot easier for the day, next week, next year and the years to come.

As stewards of the land, we are pleased to look around the community and see awareness and involvement in caring for Planet Earth:  recycling, reusing, reducing energy usage, mulching organic waste, planting gardens and buying local.

So to help promote Earth Day, we are offering a free tomato plant to every customer who comes out this weekend, on either Saturday or Sunday.   Yes, this means one plant for everyone along for the ride:   from the 6-week-old to your cousin here for the weekend.   This could be a great project for kids.  We hope you can find a spot in your garden, your lawn or a pot on your patio to plant it.   As you care for it, we hope it will bring you a little joy and some wonderful tomatoes as a reward for your efforts!

Tomato plants looking for a home!

What else will we have this weekend?  We will have lots of other plants for sale.  The weather predictions looks like we may have a few more cool nights this weekend, but after that, things are looking good.  So it is time to get those gardens started.  We have lots of tomato plants of all different varieties.   These are the same tomatoes that we grow and sell here each year, so if you know our tomatoes, you know they have great flavor.    We also have “cold crop” plants for sale:  these are items that don’t mind if it does frost like cabbage, kale, brussel sprouts, lettuce, broccoli and cauliflower.

We also hope to have asparagus all weekend, however, these cool nights are really limiting our yield so we tend to sell out quickly each day.  If you would like some, please call ahead and place and order to make sure we can get it for you.  269-244-5690.

So Happy Earth Day, and thank you for all you do to care for the earth.

Beth and everyone at Corey Lake Orchards

 

 

 

Mid April Update

Asparagus Update:  With the warm weather over the weekend, we were able to pick asparagus again today and have it for sale in the market again.  Due to the cold weather forecasted for this week,  we do not know when we will be picking again.  If you would like to place an order for some, call us at 269-244-5690, and we will save it for you or call us before you come to make sure we have some left.

Plants for Sale:  We now have vegetable plants for sale in the market.    We currently have the “cold crop” plants for sale which are: cabbage, spinach, kale, broccoli, brussel sprouts, and lettuce plants. We still have onion sets and potato seeds  for sale.    Since these are “cold crops” these can be planted anytime right now without fear of frost.

Tomato plants:  We are just starting to get tomato plants in for sale and have several varieties available.    If you decide to put these out in your garden now, you will have to protect them from frost.

We will continue to have more vegetable plants and lots more tomato plants for sale as the planting season continues, probably through the end of May.  Just to make sure we have what you are looking for, it is best to call ahead.  269-244-5690.

Frost Update:  Fortunately we have not been hit as hard as some of our fellow farmers to the north west, but we do have some frost damage to the strawberries, pears, cherries and grapes so far.  Unfortunately there is still more frost predicted yet for this week, so we’ll know more by next week.  The frost has delayed the rhubarb and it will probably not be ready until the week of April 23rd now.

From everyone at Corey Lake Orchards.

Asparagus and Frost Update

In the frosts that occurred over the past several nights, we did lose most of our asparagus that was above ground level.    So we will not be trying to pick again until next week.  Check our website or call us about 4-17 to see if we are picking again.  Feel free to leave an order with your name, how many pounds you want and phone number, and we can call you when we can fill it.  (269-244-5690).

This past week of frosty nights have brought some injury to our fruit crops, but we are overall thankful that we have not suffered any severe damage so far.  We’ll keep you updated.

Beth and everyone at Corey Lake Orchards

 

Easter Weekend and Frost Update

Frost Update:  We did get a hard  frost last night -April 6th,  but so far it looks like we have come out fairly well.  We lost just a few strawberries (only the few that were in bloom) and just a few sweet cherries, but it appears as if the apples, sour cherries, grapes and pears are okay.  We were very lucky in that the asparagus did not get frosted, so we will be picking on Monday, April 9th.  There are more cold nights to come so please keep your fingers crossed for us.

Given that we will not be picking a lot of asparagus until it stays much warmer, please call ahead and order it to make sure we have it.  (269-244-5690).  Leave us your name, number and how much you would like.

We also expect to have rhubarb the week of April 16th.

Brandy Update:  Bruce opened the 2011 fall apple brandy that he made and it passed the taste test for being ready.  (That test is the approval by the owner:  Mr. Hubbard!)  So. we finally have apple brandy for sale again.   Since we are not officially open for the year, we are doing brandy sales by appointment only.  Just give us a call.  (269-244-5690).

We will leave you with a glimpse of our Honeycrisp apples in bloom, their beauty is a wonderful Easter gift to all of us!

Honeycrisp apples in bloom on April 7th, 2012