This holiday weekend, along with all of you, we’d like to extend our appreciation to our veterans and active service members for all that they have given and sacrificed. We’d like to treat any veteran or active service member who comes to the market over the weekend and on Memorial Day to a free cake donut. (Yes, we will be open our normal hours of 8 until 6 on Memorial Day.)
The most frequently asked question has become “When will strawberries be ready?”
- Sadly, the freeze/frost event in late May hurt about 60% of our early variety berries, but we are pleased with how the middle and late berries are coming with so many blossom and berries! So U-Pick will open when the later berries come in to ensure you have a great picking experience. Our best guess is that U-PIck strawberries would be ready the week of June 12th. We recommend you check back around June 5th for an update. Depending on the weather, we may have some of the early berries already picked for sale on the market this coming week. Yes, we understand everyone is anxious for a Michigan strawberry….they are coming!
- Pricing will be the same as last year when the berries come into full production: at that point, a quart of berries already picked will be $3.75 and a flat of 8 quarts, ordered in advance or when available, will be $28. You can order flats anytime now by calling us at 269-244-5690 and we’ll call you when ready. U-Pick pricing will be $2.25 a quart.
What we have on the market now:
Asparagus: We have plenty of asparagus now, this is the time to can, freeze, or simply get a lot to enjoy. It will only last a few more weeks…pricing is the same as last year: $2.25 a pound, 10# or more in bulk, goes to $2.00 a pound. If you want to call and place an order for a large quantity, call us at 269-244-5690, but we have plenty on hand.
Rhubarb: Available now for $2.50 a pound. If you need 10 pounds or more, please call us to order and we’ll get it picked and ready. 269-244-5690. And….if you don’t have time or want to make your own rhubarb pie, stop into our bakery where we have this spring favorite pie ready.
Some of our U-Pick Herbs are ready. Find bags, scissors for cutting around the neck of the bird overlooking the herb garden. A list of what is ready is posted at the market.
Bedding plants: All of the plants that we will have for the year are here now! Yes, it is time to get your gardens finished….or for some of you, started! Memorial Day has always served as a marker for when gardens and flower beds should be planted and finished.
- Cold-loving vegetables: cabbage, kale, brussels sprouts, various lettuce varieties, broccoli, chard, and spinach.
- Flower annuals: We have a huge selection of flower annuals….too many to list!
- Tomato plants: We have a large selection of tomatoes (all the ones that we grow here in our own fields) and mini tomatoes like grape and cherry.
- Other “heat loving” vegetable plants like peppers, cucumbers, melons, squash, eggplant
- Hanging flower baskets
- Specialty pots made up to select from
- Lettuce and spinach bowls, for your “pick your own salad.”
Organic Produce: Lettuce, spinach, kale and carrots, grown in our organically certified hoophouse and at our organic schoolhouse garden. Look for the bright organic sign located by the market cooler where we keep this produce fresh.
Bakery Update: If you would like us to save something for you feel free to call us at 269-244-5690 and we will gladly set it back for you!
Bakery offerings for the weekend will be:
- Cookies: Cut Out Sugar, Monster (chocolate chips, M&M’s peanut butter and oatmeal), Iced Lemon, Peanut Butter, Ginger Molasses, Smores, and Cherry White Chocolate Chip
- Pies: Apple, Blueberry, Cherry, Peach, Strawberry Rhubarb and Rhubarb and Lemon Cream
- Bread: Whole Wheat, Cinnamon, Italian, Whole Grain, and Tuscan, as well as Hamburger Buns and Hot Dog Buns. We are partnering again with La Brea bakery this year and will have the following breads: Semolina Cheese, Roasted Garlic Loaf, and Jalapeño Cheese. The popular Vegetable Bread returns this weekend!
- Cinnamon Rolls and Pecan Sticky Buns
- Assorted Dessert Bars
- Muffins: Banana Nut, Blueberry, Lemon Poppyseed, Pistachio, and Strawberry
- Cupcakes: Coca-Cola chocolate cupcakes and vanilla cupcakes are back!
- Donuts: We will have our Blueberry, Buttermilk, and Cherry cake donuts available Friday, Saturday, Sunday and on the holiday Monday. We will also have Cherry Fritters, Vanilla Fluff Longjohns, Yeast Twists, Bavarian Cream (Custard) Longjohns, Raspberry Bismarks, and Yeast Rings (available all week)
Alcohol offerings: We have our full range of brandy for sale. We also have cherry wine, as well as: Strawberry Cider (the 2017 edition of the cider many of you liked last year), Sweet Cider, Ginger Cider, Dry Cider, Hometown Hero, Brunch Cider, made with vanilla and Michigan maple syrup, and a new one: Bark Bite. Bark Bite is a totally dry cider aged with smoked hickory, beech, cherry, and oak barks.
We also have our new Afternoon Cider. Becca’s a big iced tea fan and whipped this up with red rooibos tea, chamomile, and a touch of strawberry. It’s a great cider to drink sitting in the spring sunshine.
Brandy tasting and tours returns this Saturday with Bruce from 1 – 3 in the brandy room. New this year are cider tastings. From 4-6 on Fridays and 3-6 on Saturdays, join Becca at the market for hard cider happy hour. We’ll be doing bottle pours and have many of our ciders on tap for flights and growler fills as well. We’re really excited to be doing more tastings this year as well as provide a nice space at the market for our customers to have a drink and pleasant conversation. Of course, we are a small family market so bear with us as we try and figure out the best way to do this and keep the atmosphere you know and love! We look forward to seeing you.
Local Products: We try to offer as many local and Michigan made products as we can. Our market is beginning to fill out with some of these and you’ll find them in the cooler, to the bakery to around on various shelves and the wall. You should be able to get just about everything you need for your weekend activities right here….from bread, to cheese or meat to accompany your fresh produce.
Happenings on the farm:
The greenhouse tomatoes and cucumbers are ripening slowly (code for please send the sun)….they will go fast, we picked one half bushel for our first picking this week!
We planted our vine crops of cucumbers, squash, melons and such. Good to finally get everything in the ground.
If you were driving by you saw us painting our peach trees trunks.Many of you have asked why we do this. Painting fruit tree trunks with white latex paint can prevent the bark from splitting and cracking off. Splitting can happen when the tree is exposed to freezing evening temperatures, followed by a daytime thawing (as you know a fairly common occurrence in this state!!). The painted white trunk helps reflect sunlight during the daytime hours and keep the tree warmer at night. It also helps protect against rodent damage, mice and voles can girdle a tree under the snow cover. Even better, we have found that rabbits don’t like the taste of paint.
Check out the antique blacksmith’s table in the center of the market for lots of information about what is going on here locally and in Michigan. We encourage you to discover some of the many treasures we have here in St. Joseph County. We will try to highlight some of our favorites for you as the year goes on. This week, the 2017 Michigan Farm Fun directories came. These are a “must have” for your vehicle glove box in order to visit the many wonderful farms in your travels around the state.
Thanks as always for buying local, from everyone at Corey Lake Orchards. We hope everyone has a pleasant and safe weekend, and if you are traveling in for the weekend, bring the sun with you, please!