Peach Picking Begins with 26 Jars of Whoopass and a $10 Special on ‘Creek Crates.

DEAR FARM FANS:  Everybody’s great.  Everyone gets a trophy.  As it is in life, so it is on the farm.  But peach season has begun and, truth be told, some of you will come out ahead while some of you will end up sulky.  That’s because—even though it’s not a competition—many vainglorious locavores positively shrivel at being outdone.

11749595_10207575006477094_55771854_nWe don’t like to stir the pot, but one local family just dropped 26 jars of peach whoopass on y’all.  Dedicated pickers Brenden, Cari, and Isabella came out last week when everybody was pooh-poohing our low sugar culinary peaches… and just look at what they did.  Picked 3 boxes of peaches and made a winter’s worth of preserves.  Booyah.

11798022_10207575006437093_1528440062_nRunning up the score, Brenden’s tribe also picked 25 pounds of cukes which made 36 jars of pickles.  (Cukes are picked out for the moment, so to the winners went the spoils.)  Thanks to Brenden for sending the inspiring pics and bringing his gang to the farm.  He said, “We think it’s very important for our kids know where our food comes from.”

01-P1230792Anyway, the moment you’ve all been waiting for:   Peaches sweet enough that you don’t need to add factory sprinkles.

1-P1170205Yes, the sweet peaches have been primping backstage with help from their eggplant handlers.  Tuning and tweaking til they were fully on fleek.  Ask at the stand which rows are picking.  And just in case you get here after a heavy crowd, we have pre-picked peaches at the stand that you can get for the u-pick price, $1.50 a pound!

03-P1230758The moment you have NOT been waiting for:  Pristine apples are ready to pick.  Many of you can’t deal with apples emotionally yet.  Apples make you think of the F-word.  Fall.

04-P1230762But Pristines are ready and it’s still only July.  Get up to the west end of Row 7 in the Dwarf Orchard and pick yourself a peanut butter vehicle.

06-P1230768Do you ever feel plum crazy?  We’ve picked a few in our little orchard.  Soft and juicy Gobstoppers.  Drool.

05-P1230736Flowers continue in superabundance.  Cut your own as you roam the foodlands.  Or buy a bouquet designed in the mind of Farmer Alice.

P1230749Warning:  Please do not pick baby eggplant.  In fact, we haven’t opened the veggie fields yet, but Sneaky McSneakersons have snuck in and plucked the babes from their cribs.  Too mean!  Let them grow.

cratesAnd now for something completely different.  You can get your own apple crates for only $10—and use them for picking, hauling, furniture, decorations, whatever.  We have a ton and you can choose the branded Indian Creek ones or the antiquey ones as you like.

08-P1230783Here’s the idea:  Every time you pick a bushel of fruits and veggies, you end up using a few plastic bags.  Those cost the farm a couple dollars, money that goes straight to the petroleum lobby.  If you’re feeling old-fashioned and fruit-forward, try a wooden crate instead of the plastic bags.  It’s a win-win.

09-P1230779You can buy wooden crates in stores for $17, $20, even $30.  These are the farm-fresh  article for only $10.  Branded with an iron brand.  Or pick the shabbier-chic version for adorning your garden.  Heck it’s not even a bad price for kindling.

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And finally a shout-out to our Silver Medal Customers-of-the-Week.  Check out this tweet from farm fan Jhoanna.  Awesome!  See you round Facebook and Twitter, and hope to see you at The ‘Creek.

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99¢ U-Pick Peaches, $3 Lavish Lillies, and a $4 Pesto Power Pack.

DEAR FARMKETEERS:  The Golden Rule has been stated so many different ways.  In farm country, we say, “Do unto peaches as you would have people do unto you.”  That means treat every peach with dignity—even the humble, early specimens that aren’t all sugar and dandiness and flamboyance.

01-P1170058We are calling the first wave of peaches our “Low Fructose Culinary Confectioner’s Peaches.”  Come pick them NOW because they are ideal for your preserves, pastries, cobblers, and jams, since you’ll be adding sugar anyway.  You’ll find these not-so-sweet peaches in Row 1.  Pick them for only 99¢/POUND through SUNDAY!

02-P1090322You can supplement your haul with PA peaches at the stand.  They are “peach-sweet” and ready for drooling.1-IMG_6414

It is also time to outfit your home with Lavish Lillies™ grown here in our kitchen garden.  These are BIG mofos (see our scale model).  “Lavish” means sumptuous, luxurious, splendid, fancy—all apt descriptions of your soul, no doubt.  And at $3/stem, you can afford to invest in yourself.

04-IMG_6450Better yet:  Get 3 stems for only $8!  That’s $1 back in your pocket.  (Do you sneeze at a dollar?  Are you allergic?!)  You can allow yourself to splurge on 3 stems when you recall Rodney Dangerfield’s alternate version of the Golden Rule:  “Look out for #1 and try not to step in #2.”

05-IMG_6412Cynics have often said that the Golden Rule really means, “Whoever has the gold makes the rules.”  Well, we’re offering everyone a chance to take a share of the power with the new Pesto Power Pack™.  For just $4, you get a bunch of basil AND these farm-fresh, hand-harvested garlic scapes that are worth their weight in gold.  Power to the pesto!

06-P1160863What else is cooking?  You can pick Yellow Transparent apples–great for saucing, drying, and freezing.  You can go treasure hunting for the last of the summer raspberries.  Next apples to pick will be Pristines, ready real soon.  The fall raspberries will come around later.

07-IMG_6432Pick your own cucumbers.  Field is right near the stand.  As if the cukes weren’t water-packed enough, there is a small flood in the field.  Slop around or tiptoe as you like.

08-IMG_6435Get the season’s first peppers at the stand:  jalapeños, serranos, green and purple bells, and more kinds on the way.

09-IMG_6445Farmer Allie has also started picking eggplant!  Fairytales, Japanese, and a few Classic.  The u-pick field will open soon.  Stay tuned.

10-IMG_6360You can roam the farm and cut your own flowers.  It’s pretty fun.  Make a bouquet or get one at the stand.  They make lovely gifts, if you want to go old-school Golden Rule.

11-IMG_6368Last chance to pick through this crop of Indian Creek shirts.  Mostly kid sizes are left.  Size 8 fits puppies 6-9 months, while size 10 will cover some yearlings.  Now only $10 for a hella cute, home-drawn shirt, hand-screened in Ithaca.

12-IMG_6361Speaking of kids and little shi(r)ts… umm… yeah!  Anyway, tune into Facebook to get upates on peach picking status between crop alerts.  Hope to see you at The ‘Creek.

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Flowers, Berries, Apples, Herbs, Peaches, Veggies, and More!

TAKE A SPIN through this week’s crop catalog, including stuff you can pick and goodies you’ll find at the stand.

2Farmer Alice has created a phantasmagoria of cut-your-own flower options.  Walk around the farm.  See and snip.  (And check out the new the HOW-TO sign.)

2rsDepending on when you get here, Raspberry Wave 3 could be ready for your party.  Waves 1 and 2 were devoured.

3apNobody has ever thrown a party for the start of Yellow Transparent Apple season.  Maybe you could make these tart little fellows feel appreciated with a hoot or holler.  They are your earliest option for homebaked pies and sauces.

5hFarmer Allie, not to be confused with Farmer Alice, says we have a “kickass” herb garden this year.  Pick your own basil, parsley, oregano, sage, dill, and mint.  And try the NEW PESTO SPECIAL:  A bag of garlic SCAPES (normally $4) plus a bundle of BASIL (normally $1-2) for only $4!  Kinda like free basil.

1Now don’t start flipping parked cars and toppling statues in celebration, but peach picking season will begin SUNDAY.  MODESTLY.  It’s a soft launch, not the initial public offering.  We got 1 row ready to go, and honestly these specimens haven’t sugared up that well.  But they are perfect peaches for pies and jams—and you can pick them!  Please stop at the stand before you go picking.  We’ll give you a map, a box, and the spiel, including our “How to Pick a Peach” tutorial which you must read aloud to your rugrats before ripping into the poor little orchard.

peachesIf you don’t want to pick your own peaches, or you miss our first wave, take home some PA peaches from the stand.

6Supplement your picking adventures with blueberries pre-packed for you at the stand.

8We’re stocking the stand with fresh-picked zucchini and cucumbers.  Several types.

lillNew in our 2015 Colors Collection, these Lavish Lilies will surely have your friends asking, “How DO you live so well?”

shirtFarm shirts!  Only $10 each—reduced for quick sale to kick off the summer.  Mostly kid sizes are left.  They’re really cute on kids.  Ask about colors and sizes.

1-IMG_6319Quote of the week, overheard at the farm stand:  “Mom, they have farm-fresh cookies!  And they’re only a dollar for 3!  Can we get some?!”  He’d read the sign alright.  But that’s CUKES, lad, cukes!  Hope to see you at The ‘Creek.

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5,000 Redheads Can’t Be Wrong; Come Get Fresh Raspberries, Flowers, Cukes, and Zukes.

DEAR FARMILY MEMBERS:  You can find the new farm booklet at the stand.  Please take a copy.  The pumpkin-haired strawberry-ginger on the cover, acting as official mascot of the 2015 season, urges you to study the map inside.

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Many of the fields have changed location this year.  That’s what they call a crop “rotation.”  Download it here.

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You’ll note 3 peach orchards, 1 raspberry patch, mutiple tomato fields, and other changes.  Download the brochure.

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If your dog eats your copy between visits, please take another.  We have 5,000 of them and we proofed each one.  Can 5,000 redheads be wrong?  No way!  How about 5,000 Deadheads?  Umm, yeah, probably.

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Raspberries are back after yins picked the first batch clean.  A sunny weekend ahead will bring ripe berries and rival pickers.  Determined hunters should find plenty; lazy ones might catch the “green sickness,” as Doctor Shakespeare called envy.

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This was our most popular Facebook post ever.  What does that say about YOU GUYS?!

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New this week!  Cut your own flowers.  You can cut any flowers you find and pay at the stand.  You’ll also find bouquets that we’ve arranged for sale.  We have more flowers than ever this year, and many will bloom over the coming weeks.

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At the stand you can get cukes and zukes.  We’re picking them and filling containers for you.

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Soft launch of the farm stand!  We’ll have a real human at the helm from noon to 5 on Saturday.  When nobody is working, you can use the self-serve box dawn to dusk.

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Almost forgot!  The rumor is:  Peaches could arrive from PA this weekend!  These would be the first regional peaches to hold you over until we open our orchards in a few weeks.

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Cityfolk are tussling over very momentous legislation.  It is illegal to keep chickens within the city limits; but, some citizens are proposing to allow up to 4 chickens per lot.  Meanwhile, just a few clucks from City Hall, one particular chicken is warming up her piano chops… Tune in next week to see if she is ready to roll!  Hope to see you at The ‘Creek.

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We Hold These Fruits to Be Self-Evident; Raspberry Picking; and, Summer Squash.

WE HOLD THESE FRUITS to be self evident, that all berries are NOT created equal.  Fresh off the vine is WAY better than boxed in plastic at the supermarket!

1-IMG_6303Just ask this platoon of pickers.  They found gobs of perfect berries after getting the tipoff on Facebook.  These kids excelled at looking UNDER the leaves for juicy berries.

2-P1050540Where’s all the fricking raspberries?!  Don’t be that guy.  If you don’t see berries in plain view, look beneath the leaves.  There are a lot of pickers coming to the farm, but with a little “LUCK and LOOK” you won’t leave empty-handed in a huff.

IMG_62883 cheers for our patriotic cover models… displaying the red, white, and blue just before we declare independence from the tyrannical British royals again.  Ritually, anyway.

4-P1050613GO USA SOCCER!  Our gals will be in the World Cup final on Sunday.  (Now if the lads could just follow their lead!)

5-IMG_6281Proof that summer really is kicking in, we have TWO crops going now:  raspberries and summer squash.  Get your zukes at the farm stand; we’ll keep it stocked.

1-P1060572Also an insider tip from Farmer Alice:  Pick-your-own flowers should be starting next week.  She went nuts and grew our biggest flower crop ever!  Gonna be a sight.

1-P1050601That’s your Fresh Crop Alert for July 3, 2015.  Remember to get daily crop updates on Facebook.  Tune in next week for our special newscast called, 5,000 Redheads Can’t Be Wrong.”  Meanwhile have a safe and happy holiday weekend.  Hope to see you at The ‘Creek.

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What the Puppy Found in the Peach Orchard, and Encouraging Words from the Crops.

DEAR FARM FANS:  Our new summer intern, called Turbo by humans and Woof by dogs, is finding tons of baby peaches rotting on the ground.

2-IMG_6212Which is a good thing!  We’re “thinning” down a bountiful crop to help the remainders grow juicy and sweet.

P1160373Despite a b-tchy winter, ALL the crops are looking jolly.  Peaches, apples, vegetables—all good so far.

3-P1220525Raspberries, too.  We have 1 field this year, and light picking started yesterday, as our Facebook friends already know.  It’s a soft launch to the season.  If you get here before the Joneses, you might find good picking in Row 1.  You can get daily mini-updates on our Facebook and Twitter.  Assume the Joneses already do.

1-P1150208Do you have a strawberry-shaped hole in your heart this year?  (See why some fans do.)  Maybe raspberry picking will help.  Or how about these encouraging words from delicious fresh crops that are coming soon…

b7We will holler when the stand is open and stocked with blubes.  Got a new field that we’ll be picking for you.

P1160608Farmer Steve says, “We’re gonna have peaches to move.”  You’ll see 3 peach orchards going in parallel this year!

matoFor many people, it’s the taste of summer:  fresh tomatoes.  Farmer Allie has been tending them real nice.

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Peppers, eggplant, summer squash… good stuff you can pick starting in July.  Stay tuned for weekly Fresh Crop Alerts and daily updates on Facebook and Twitter.

IMG_3054Farmer Steve again: “Apple crop looks awesome!” You never know after a b-tchy winter, but we’re on track for best ever.

P1130270Pumpkins, squash, cider, donuts… all kinds of great stuff ahead.  But let’s not talk about fall stuff yet!  Yeesh.

IMG_6180Okay, back to work, knocking perfectly good peaches off the trees.  (Farming can be counterintuitive.)  The season will officially begin soon when you hear the trumpet sounding chicken playing piano.  Hope to see you at The ‘Creek.

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Berry Report and Crop Calendar: “At least you are not a strawberry…”

LOYAL FARMKETEERS:  This year we look to the children for signs and omens.  Will we have a crop?  Will life be buttercups or bitter cups?  In the guileless, apple-cheeked faces of our young, much is foretold.

ahhhOf all the oracles, this lad—son of a Farm Fan—may have unwittingly spoken for the masses with his silent scream.  He was lamenting the long wait for berry season to begin, but little did he know the news would get worse.  Much worse for strawberry worshippers.

frownThere will be no strawberries this year.  The first crop will be raspberries in July.  That’s when the farm stand will open and you can come picking.  Great stuff will follow.

fieldYou see, a couple years ago we planted 10,000 strawberry plants by hand.  It was a pretty field, and well-loved.

voteBut recently we faced a classic farmer’s dilemma:  How best to use the land?  Berries again?  Or fruit trees?

islandStrawberries were voted off the island—at least for this year.  We are retooling the field for orchards and nursery.  You will still find a big variety of crops on the farm, including annual vegetables; but, strawberries had to give way.  Fruit trees sustain us here at The ‘Creek.  They give back year after year, and you guys devour every piece of fruit we can grow!  Apples, pears, peaches, plums, apricots…

adiosTough news for strawberry lovers.  Well, like Mother always says, “At least YOU are not a strawberry.  The life of a strawberry is nasty, brutish, and short.”  Mother often cribs from Hobbes’ Leviathan while sniffling and chopping onions.

helloSo, we soldier on.  And, lo!  Raspberries grow!  Even as we dilly-dally.  Yes, even as we shilly-shally.

vegBut, wait, there’s more!  After raspberries, you’ll find peppers, eggplant, tomatoes, cucumbers, zucchini, and peaches!

appsThen, an awesome apple crop!  Best ever?!  We’re getting ahead of ourselves.  You will be first to hear about raspberry picking if you stay tuned to these Fresh Crop Alerts and follow along on Facebook and Twitter.  Meanwhile, have a look at the annual crop calendar.

dogsBeen a long time since last season.  The dogs need something to think about.  They hope to see you at The ‘Creek.

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Oh, What We Have in Store for You! Big Spring Ideas from The ‘Creek.

DEAR ‘CREEKERS, let’s catch you up on farm country news.  Basically, farm country has become a real HUSTLE.  Everyone is manic about local food.  There is a constant hubbub about field-to-table stuff.  And certain farms are always one-upping us with their splashy headlines. cel Like a certain cidery south of here.  They are famous now.  Maybe you’ve heard of them.  They’re getting ridiculous reviews and they went digital this winter so that you can buy their amazing cider online. melissa And another farm north of here.  They’re all like, “Yeah, we work our fields with HORSES.”  These very same do-gooders are being notably bad-ass by opening a new cider tasting house just off the Cayuga Lake Wine Trail.  Coming soon! pepp Meanwhile, what do WE have to offer you?  Nothing but a skanky old pepper that dangled here all winter.  Or perhaps you would like to buy a fruit tree which will bring you a nice crop… in 4 years.  We know what you’re thinking:  “Snore.” 640 Well, we are tired of being second banana, so we surveyed you guys for new ideas.  You sent brilliant suggestions, and we’ve been racking our brains for how to pull them all together.  Here is what we have in store for you this year… uni We got a unicorn.  That’s right.  A fricking UNI.  Go big or go home, right?  Whatever about horses and cider.  We’re going for timeless and magical.  You will see this wondrous beast in the orchards come summer.  Boo-yah! cat We’re not stopping there.  Can you say PEGASUS?  Yep, we ordered one of them, too.  Came in last week.  She’ll be giving free rides to children under 12 on Tuesdays. tino Did we mention our new CENTAUR?  Grass-fed, free-range.  If you squeeze peaches on the trees, you’ll be dealing with Old Stomp-n-Snort.  Better to follow the rules. P1210599 Not impressed?  How about a Finger Lakes first — a real live GORGON.  If you bite an apple and throw it on the ground, you’ll be turned to stone before you can say, “Honeycrisp.” trees As you can see, we’re hoping for a big year.  We’ll send you a crop update next month, but meantime you can visit our nursery web site to buy baby fruit trees for spring planting, such as Bubblegum plums on Myrobalan rootstock or Novaspy apples on Antonovka.  Hope to see you soon at The ‘Creek.

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All Hail the Most Important Person in the County; News of the Farm Stand’s Hibernation.

THERE ARE LOTS of hardworking folks here in farm country.  And like Farmer Steve says, whoever is working on the farm RIGHT NOW is doing the most important work of all.  Yes, we are all important people doing important work.

1-IMG_4871But none of us will ever measure up, if you believe this old thing hanging in the County Planner’s office.  You can try til you are periwinkle in the face and you still won’t top this fellow.  How does that make you feel?

3-IMG_5088Farmer Tino isn’t one to say much about stuff like that.  Just keeps on working.  He’s more the type to sing you a song.

4-IMG_4935You can hear him play LIVE this Saturday night at the Silver Line Tap Room in Trumansburg.  February 7 at 7 PM.

Get your exclusive sneak preview by listening to this YouTube of his live gig on WVBR FM, “The Salt Creek Show.”

5-IMG_4868If you follow that old map in the Planner’s Office, you’ll find Indian Creek just past the orphanage… now the School of Massage.

6-IMG_4860When you get here, you’ll find it pretty quiet and snowy.  The farm stand is closed for the winter — all sold out of apples and cider.

7-IMG_5104But please do come out to ski or hike.  Some folks have been out this week just trekking around the orchards.

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Say hello if you see us, or ignore us as you like.  Ski right on through.  That’s something old Ezra can’t do.

9-IMG_5111Happy winter and hope to see you at The ‘Creek.

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An Epic Farm Fail, and a Winter Lesson in Winning.

LIFE IS NOT a zero-sum game, but when somebody messes up, you can usually seize the chance to profit from their blunder.  “Outrageous!” you cry.  “Repugnant!”  Maybe.  But, still.

1-IMG_4764Last week all 3,000 of you messed up.  All except one—the lady who seized the day.  Yes, the nice person in this picture was THE ONLY FARM FAN to answer our 2015 Call for Ideas.  We were so moved by her earnestness, while the rest of you were being too cool for school and just totally messing up, that we awarded her a bottle of Kingston Black hard cider from our chums at Eve’s Cidery.  As luck would have it, she had answered “hard cider” to all of the questions.

4-P1040288You really have no ideas to send?  That means there is nothing to improve on the farm.  You want 2015 to be just as dubious and discombobulated as 2014.  You want the dogs to be just as fruitless.  You want the signage to be even less helpful…

1-IMG_4417Thing is, you really should send ideas.  We try to come up with ideas on our own, like ibuprofen toothpaste and eco-friendly cider fracking.  But these have long R&D times.  Can’t you bring us back to earth with practible suggestions?

spiralSpeaking of earth-n-space, behold this apple spiral.  It had pride of place at the Solstice Party of farm fan Wendy.  Those are her kids being the “Starry Guides.”

appelsThey used mutsus for candleholders.  The next day, apple crisps!  Go Team Locavore.  Winning.

1-IMG_4852We still have mutsus.  Still pressing cider.  Still open.  The little farm stand that could.  Apples and cider.  That’s about it.  But every visit helps.  A few bucks here and there is better than zero bucks everywhere.

3-IMG_4863Thanks for reading and sending your ideas.  We won’t email every week through the winter—just here and there to keep in touch.

3-P1040450You can come out to the farm any day.  Ski around.  Hike around.  Whatever.  The views are long with the foliage down.

Some of the sights are mesmerizing.  Watch this intrepid soul.  Take heart!  Hope to see you at The ‘Creek.

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