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

Monthly Archive: June 2012

Happy 4th of July Week!

Vegetable Update:  What a difference a few more days have made, especially these hot ones, with bringing on the vegetables!   The zucchini and yellow summer squash are coming on so fast we can barely keep up picking or selling it.  We are now digging our red new potatoes daily!  We are also bringing in field cucumbers, cabbage, cauliflower, broccoli, kale, peas, sweet banana peppers, hot hungarian peppers, red/yellow/white sweet onions, and starting to pick green beans.  Of course we know your real question is: will we have sweet corn for the 4th of July?  Sorry, we will not, it is really been hit hard by lack of rain.  We’ll give you an update in about a week.  We are as anxious for it as you are.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Blueberries:    Blueberries are ready!  We have them in pints, quarts or 5 and 10-pound boxes.  If you want 10-pound boxes, please call and order  in advance so we can make sure to have them for you.    269-244-5690.

Fresh Cut Flowers:  On weekends we have fresh cut flowers:  zinnias, snapdragons, daisies, bee balm, cosmos, and others.  Feel free to bring your own vase and make an arrangement.  Or you can buy a vase or take them home in a paper cup.

Baked Goods:  This Friday, our bakers are bringing a new cookie:  peanut butter and honey.  Also, now that it is zucchini season, their famous zucchini-chocolate chip cookies are back.  (This is truly my favorite cookie, not only are they delicious, but don’t we all feel better about eating a cookie with a vegetable in it??!!)   Since it is blueberry season, they will have fresh blueberry pies!

Tomato Update:   Our greenhouse has lots of green tomatoes yet, but we are weeks away on those ripening, our field tomatoes look great so far, but they are weeks away from ripening as well.    We are temporarily bringing in tomatoes from another greenhouse in Indiana.    We have done the taste test for you and yes, they taste like a true tomato.

Lodi apples are coming:  This is our first apple of the year and while we lost a good share of them due to frost damage, we will still have some.  They might be ready this weekend or certainly by next week.  They are a green, very tart apple, used primarily for pies or cooking, but also enjoyed by people who like really sour things!   We have started a list of people who would like to get some, if you want to be added to the list, please call us at 269-244-5690.

Herbs:  We are experimenting with growing herbs this year.  This weekend we will have basil, parsley and dill, with other types coming later.

What are tomatillos?  We have some for you to try.   Tomatillos look like small green tomatoes encased in a papery husk.  They’re pleasantly tart, and principally used to make salsas, particularly salsa verde.  They’re good raw, but many cooks cook them briefly in order to enhance their flavor.  Frozen tomatillos are good substitutes for fresh.  Store fresh ones in the refrigerator for up to a month, or cook them and freeze them.

Recipe section at the market:   Please check out our information and recipe section at the market.   There are some great recipes on how to use kale,  summer squash and tomatillos.   If you have a favorite recipe using some of our produce that you would share, bring us a copy.

Brandy:  Our brandy house will be open from 1 – 4 this Saturday, for tasting, tours or just talking to Bruce!

Still looking for rain……the lack of rain is truly stressing the crops and our faithful crew who are trying to keep the irrigation running 24/7.  Our thanks to Jay who gets the sleepless nights as he monitors it and for our day crew who help to move it to various fields several times a day.

The traveling irrigation system making its way down the rows, 6-26-12

Please have a good 4th of July, stay safe and we hope to see you our way to get some local produce.

Beth and everyone at Corey Lake Orchards

 

 

Irrigation

 

 

 

 

 

Happy First Day of Summer!

And…..it really feels like summer doesn’t it?  We are doing our best to keep our crops growing, but…..the lack of rain is really taking its toll.  We are irrigating 24/7 and cannot keep up with how dry and hot it is.  Please do a rain dance!

Our market offerings are sparse right now without much produce available because we are between crops.    Strawberries, black sweet cherries and tart cherries are gone for the year.    We are still picking yellow sweet cherries for a few more days and today we started picking blueberries!    You can see from the picture below that they are just turning blue.  Our vegetables are coming in slowly, we are picking lettuce, kale, onions, peas and hope to have some summer squash by this weekend.    Green beans are about a week away and sweet corn is several more weeks away.  Our greenhouse is beginning to phase out for the year, so  we are picking fewer tomatoes and cucumbers each day.  As you know, we grow what we sell, so we’ll all have to be patient as the summer crops begin to fill in.   Always feel free to call us in advance before you drive out to see what we have, as we tend to sell out of things early on some days.  269-244-5690.

Dragonfly resting on the blueberries! 6-19-12

Weekend offerings:  Reminder that our bakers will fill up the market with fresh home made pies, cookies, bread and cinnamon rolls starting on Friday, Saturday and Sunday.    Bruce will be in the Brandy house from 1 – 4 on Saturday for tours and tasting.  He is currently processing a batch of sweet cherry brandy…..it smells so amazing, if you are out you can probably coax him into letting you see how it is processed and smell the aroma.

As always, thanks for buying local.

Beth and everyone at Corey Lake Orchards

 

 

 

Mid June Update and Happy Father’s Day

Here we find ourselves already in the middle of June.

Sweet Cherries:  We have now picked all of the black sweet cherries,  we have several hundred pounds left and then they will be gone for the year.  The last picking was just beautiful, so hurry out to get some.    We hope to have them most of the weekend.      The U-Pick Sweet cherries are essentially gone also, there are just a few trees of yellow sweet cherries that can be picked, but be aware that the cherries left are way up in the tops of the 20 foot plus trees.    Despite the frost damage, our sweet cherry crop was one of the nicest we have had in many years.   Thanks to all of our customers who came out to pick or buy some.  Also thanks to my son Jay for trying a different spraying technique this spring on the cherry trees which helped to make them so nice.  And… a big thanks to our crew who picked them at the tops of those very tall trees.

Sour (Tart) Cherries:   As you know, we had a very small crop due to the frost.  There are only a few more left out on the trees, you will need a ladder to pick them.  But…..if you are determined to make a pie, you could probably get enough for that with a little work.

Strawberries:  We talked the crew into trying to pick a few more before we “put the field away” for the year.  So they will be picking on Friday morning, the berries won’t be large, but they will be fresh and incredibly sweet.  Call first to see if we have any left before you come out.  269-244-5690.

Vegetables:  Our summer vegetables are just starting to come in, we are trying to pick peas, kale, lettuce and broccoli daily.  Other types coming in about ten days.

Father’s Day Ideas:  Our bakers will be bringing a special treat for Father’s Day: their famous cinnamon rolls, but this time with maple frosting sprinkled with candied bacon.  Another idea is to bring Dad out for brandy tasting on Saturday from 1 – 4.  Our brandy maker Bruce, being a father and grandfather himself, will be happy to help with suggestions on what to pair with our brandy and brandy infusions.

So….Happy Father’s Day to all of the fathers.  A special wish for my own father, still active on the farm, who started Corey Lake Orchards 51 years ago.  We all appreciate what he created which allows the the 2nd and 3rd generation of family, workers and customers to continue to enjoy it.

Beth and everyone at Corey Lake Orchards

 

 

 

 

 

 

Strawberry, Sweet and Sour Cherry Update

Strawberries are officially gone for the season, wow, didn’t that seem fast?

Sweet Cherries:  We will have sweet cherries for probably only a few more days.  We will have them picked for sale on the market, since we are not sure how fast they will go, call first to make sure we have them before you drive out.  269-244-5690.

U-Pick Sweet Cherries:  We had a lot of people out over the weekend to pick.  The dark black cherries that are left are in the tops of the trees.   Since we have 20 – 30 foot trees, it is very difficult to pick and no longer reachable even with a step ladder.   There are some yellow cherries that you can get to with a step ladder.  So….unless you have a very tall ladder and are good at moving it around in a tree, we would not recommend trying to come pick them.  Thanks to everyone who came out to pick.  Everyone who did got some beautiful cherries this year!

Sour Cherries:  We have some sour cherries now on the market for sale by the quart.   These too will probably only last a few days.  They are $4.00 a quart.

U-Pick Sour Cherries:  We will open the U-Pick Sour cherries on Tuesday, June 12th.  We do not have a very large crop of them due to the earlier freeze.    Depending on how many people come out on Tuesday, they may only last a day or so given the small crop.  They will be $1.00/pound to pick.

These 90 degree days are finishing off the cherry crop quicker than all of us would like.

Beth and everyone at Corey Lake Orchards

 

Strawberry season is ending but out Sweet Cherries are beautiful!!

U-Pick Strawberries:  While we had hoped to have U-Pick strawberries a while longer, after we finished with the U-Pick this morning we have decided to close the U-Pick for the rest of the season as the berries are getting small and sparse on the plants.    Sorry that it ended so early.  We are hoping for a better strawberry year next year.  We have planted an additional 2 acres so if all goes well, we will have a lot more berries next year.   Thanks to everyone who came out and picked this year!

Picked Strawberries:  We will try to pick berries for a few more days to have for sale at $3.00 a quart on the market.  We will only be picking a few each day so they will sell out quickly.  Call first to see if we have them and we can hold them for you.  269-244-5690.

Sweet Cherries:  Our sweet cherries are ready and we have plenty for you to pick or to buy already picked.  We opened on Wednesday and everyone who came out to pick commented on how much fun they had picking!  However, you need to bring a small ladder with you as the bottoms of the trees have been picked.   Given the 90-degree days coming over the weekend they will probably not last much longer than 4 – 5 more days.

A beautiful cluster of sweet cherries ready to be picked! 6-7-12

See our website for more information on cherry picking:  http://www.coreylakeorchards.com/2012/06/cherry-and-strawberry-update/

Sour Cherries:  We have only about 10% of a crop, we will have some picked and we will open for U-Pick for the few cherries that are there.  Check back with us around June 11th to see if they are ready.

Blueberries:  Our blueberry crop is looking good.  They might be ready in a few weeks!    We do not have enough blueberries for U-Pick, but we will have them already picked for sale on the market. We planted 1000 new plants last year that you might have seen as you come down M-60 where all the flags are marking the new bushes.  This is their 2nd year and some of them will have a few blueberries this year, but it will be several more years before we have any substantial crop off of them.  With this addition we hope to have U-Pick blueberries in the future.

Vegetables:  We are starting to pick peas, shell-outs as well as sugar peas with edible pods, lettuce, kale, broccoli, radishes and cucumbers from the greenhouse.  This weekend we will start pulling our onions for sale with green tops.

Tomatoes:  We still have lots of tomatoes coming out of the greenhouse.  And guess what, those tomato plants that we dared to put out in the field in March that we babied through all of the weather?  We picked a 1/4 of a bushel of tomatoes from them this week!!  We are pretty sure this breaks my Dad’s all time record for having the earliest field tomatoes.  He was very happy.

Baked Goods:  As always, our bakers will be bringing in their baked goods for Friday, Saturday and Sunday.

Brandy Tasting:  We invite you out to have a tour of our brandy-making facility and try some.  We are open every Saturday from 1 – 4.

As always, we would love to have you visit our farm market and we appreciate your buying local.

Beth and everyone at Corey Lake Orchards