Yesterday officially marked the first day of summer, the longest day of the year. And with power supply problems and phone issues it truly felt like the longest day of the year! Thanks to the customers who patiently waited when it took longer to check out. We apologize to those of you who have been trying to call us, everything is back up and running now.
Strawberries are coming to an end. While we will try to keep U-Pick and picked berries on the market through the weekend, it will be a day to day decision based on how they hold up with the heat and potential rain in the forecast. So best to call before you come to see what the situation is: 269-244-5690. We are no longer selling them by the flat as they are harder to pick now, so just by the quart for $3.75. U-Pick pricing remains at $2.25 a quart. So hard to accept that strawberries will be gone for another year. 🙁 They were so sweet this year. Thanks to everyone who came out to pick and to get them fresh at the market.
Sweet Cherry U-Pick will open on Friday, June 23rd for picking. After getting into the trees this week, we realize there are really not a lot of sweet cherries to pick this year due to poor spring pollination when it was so cold and wet. We want to be upfront with you about the picking conditions so you can make the best decision before you drive here, especially if you are coming from a distance. We grow about 8 different varieties including black, red, yellow and a few that are multi-colored. We have lots of yellow sweet cherries which are really good! Try them! This may be the year you want to enjoy your cherries already picked!
- Pricing: 2.25 per pound to pick (same price as last year.)
- The sweet cherry trees are very tall (15 – 25 feet). We cannot lend you a ladder (sorry!), see note below on this.
- Length of the season. It is hard to determine how long they will last since we don’t know how many folks may come out to pick. Feel free to call us before you come and we can tell you how the picking is. 269-244-5690.
Tart Cherry U-Pick: We will open this orchard on Friday June 23rd when the sweet cherries open (you will need to spot pick carefully to get the ripe ones). Their prime picking will be around June 29th and after if you want to wait and get them nice and ripe.
- Tart cherry U-Pick pricing:: 1.50 pound, over 50 pounds @$1.25
- Length of season. We have a good crop of these and would expect them to last about a week to 10 days.
Information for U-Pick cherries:
- U-Pick Hours: 8 – 6 daily, please be finished picking by 5:45 p.m. to be back to the market by 6pm.
- Be sure to dress appropriately (closed shoes, long pants and sleeves) as you may run into poison ivy or prickly plants in the orchard area, among other hazards.
- Please bring your own containers. We have buckets you may borrow to pick in, then you can transfer to your own containers (bowls, tubs, buckets, etc.).
- Check in at the market first for directions and to weigh the containers you are picking in.
- Please bring your own ladder as we do not supply ladders. Some of the best cherries are out of reach and even a small step ladder would be helpful. We cannot let anyone climb the trees lest the branches get damaged or even worse, you injure yourself, so please come prepared.
- Our current orchards are older with very tall trees, so be mindful this is not always the ideal “small children” picking experience unless you come when there is still picking from the ground.
What else we have on the market now:
- Picked Sweet Cherries
- Picked Tart Cherries
- U-Pick Herbs
- Snow Peas
- Yellow Squash
- Limited supply of Greenhouse Tomatoes and Greenhouse Cucumbers. Greenhouse tomato plants produce their fruit in successive “waves” as you can see from this picture. We finished harvesting the first “wave” and now are impatiently waiting for the second wave to turn red. As we have done in previous years, we will be supplementing with tomatoes from Indiana farm greenhouses.
- Cut flowers will be back this weekend!
Organic Produce: Lettuce, kale, collards, garlic scapes, and carrots, grown in our organically certified hoophouse and at our organic schoolhouse garden. A few cucumbers too and pints of sungold cherry tomatoes too! (Just starting to come in.) Look for the bright organic sign located by the market cooler where we keep this produce fresh.
Bakery Update: This weekend will be the last weekend for our strawberry glaze pies with the strawberry season coming to an end. 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, S’mores, and Cherry White Chocolate Chip
- Pies: Apple, Blueberry, Cherry, Peach, Strawberry Rhubarb, Strawberry Glaze
- Bread: Whole Wheat, Cinnamon, Italian, Whole Grain, Vegetables 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
- Cinnamon Rolls and Pecan Sticky Buns
- Assorted Dessert Bars
- Muffins: Banana Nut, Blueberry, Lemon Poppyseed, Pistachio, and Strawberry
- Donuts: We will have our Blueberry, Buttermilk, and Cherry Cake Donuts available Friday, Saturday, and Sunday. 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. In bottles, we have Sweet Cider, Ginger Cider, Dry Cider, Prince Tribute Cider, Hopped Cider, Brunch Cider, and Bark Bite. We have cherry wine and Kaiser Cyser as well.
We’ll have a few additional ciders on tap during our hard cider happy hour, Friday from 4-6 or Saturday from 3-6 if you want a growler or a sample before you buy! In addition to what we have bottled, we’ll have strawberry cider, rhubarb cider, and carrot cider on tap. 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! It is really wonderful sitting in the breeze enjoying a cold cider on these weekend afternoons.
And of course, we have our usual brandy house tours with Bruce from 1-3 on Saturdays, and full range of brandy offerings.
Happenings on the farm:
We are now into thinning apples from trees and varieties that have an abundance of apples. We do this so that the apples remaining can have room to grow to a large size and to get the weight off the limbs so they don’t break. Every year it always surprises us how many apples need to come off, look at what is on the ground in this picture!
Blueberry watching! They are coming and we expect to have them picked and for U-Pick by the 4th of July.
Summer means all of the local farmers markets have started. You can find us at Texas Township Farmers Market every Tuesday, plus every other Saturday (there again on July 8th). Find out more: http://www.texastownship.org/community/farmers-market/. We also partner with CINO and the Huss School project to have our produce and baked goods at the Three Rivers Farmer’s market every Thursday: https://www.facebook.com/pg/trfarmersmarket/about/?ref=page_internal
In the last few weeks, the most frequently asked question has been what kind of flower is in our stone bed in front of the market? It is yellow loosestrife (Lysimachia punctata). We love it! If you want some, see us in the spring when we thin some out before it takes over the entire bed. Find out more about it here: https://www.gardenia.net/plant/lysimachia-punctata-yellow-loosestrife
Everyone at Corey Lake Orchards appreciates your buying local. Hope to see you during cherry season!