Get Ready for the Pigs-n-Apples Party This Saturday! Rain or Shine!

HI, FARM FANS.  Today’s Fresh Crop Alert contains the latest update on Saturday’s harvest hootenany.  Please read, then tell us you’re coming on the Facebook event.  You can also consult the party page for details.  See IMPORTANT PARKING INFO below.


On Saturday, September 27, from noon til 3 PM, there will be a party called Pigs-n-Apples III.  RAIN OR SHINE.  In other words, the rain date is Saturday, too.  We’ll be here no matter what.


You will see a crap-ton of cars, people, and activities.  We don’t know how many people will show up, but we’ll do our best to make it smooth.  Hopefully everyone will GO WITH THE FLOW.  Kids will share nice on the playground.  Parents won’t fret about dirty kids.


IMPORTANT:  DO NOT PARK ON THE HIGHWAY (RTE 96).  THE SHERIFF WILL TOW YOUR CAR.  After towing a bunch of cars, the sheriff will run us out of town like so many swine-rustlin’ scofflaws.  Then there won’t be any more pigs or apples congregating west of Cayuga’s waters.  Good ideas:  Consider (1) carpooling and (2) arriving early.  There will be traffic.


We’ll help you find a parking spot on the farm.  Then you can wander to the party on the hilltop.  Admission is free.  Games are free.  YEP, IT’S A FREE PARTY.   You could even come out “cash-flow positive” if your kid finds the Golden Apple.


There will be FOOD AND DRINK FOR SALE.  The Piggery will serve their famous local meats on the grill.  They will also have vegetarian and vegan calabacitas.  Our friends from Eve’s Cidery will be on the scene with their artisan hard ciders.  Of course there will be donuts and fresh cider from Indian Creek, and possibly other goodies.


Feel free to supplement the food with your own picnic, and definitely bring your BEST APPLE PIE.  This contest is no joke—delicious pies showed up last year.  But there’s always room at the top:  Could you be the challenger who makes the reigning champs eat humble pie?


Apple and pumpkin picking will work like a normal day, but there will be TWO PLACES TO PAY AND SHOP:  the farm stand down front and the party tent.  Your best option will be to pay at the party tent so you can hop in your car and leave—without trying to park temporarily at the farm stand on your way out, where the parking lot will be full.


EVERYONE IS WELCOME.  The party is our chance to say thanks for another great year.  Hope to see you at The ‘Creek!

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The 99¢ Big Mac Sale, Pumpkin Pop Explosion, Playground 3.0, and the Pigs Party in 9 Days.

THIS WEEKEND’S FARMCAST—Partly cidery with a 100% chance of donuts.  Abundant apples in the morning and afternoon.  Heavy pumpkins til dark.  Expect McIntosh flooding in some kitchens following a massive sale.  Dress for sunflowers and smiles.


It’s time, folks.  It’s apple time.  Don’t mess around and miss it.  Pick McIntosh apples for only 99¢/lb when you pick 10 pounds!


Come see the BIGGEST pumpkin patch around.  Practice carving for the Pigs-n-Apples Party.  Score a great coupon on Facebook.


The cider tastes better every week because new apples ripen.  The donuts taste better every week because… they’re donuts.

Party Next Week!

{ Saturday, September 27. }

Pigs-n-Apples POSTER 2014Only 9 days away!  RAIN OR SHINE.  You’ll get a special update next week, but one thing to note now:  No parking on the highway or the sheriff will run us out of town.  We will find a spot for you on the farm.  Prepare for a crowd.  Breathe.  Smile.  It’s a FREE PARTY.


There will be food and games.  There will be wet and dirty kids.  The Apples will beat the Pigs in tug-of-war, as usual.


BRING YOUR BEST PIE.  Last year’s winner was some tasty sh*t.  You’ve watched enough cooking shows, now go big or go home!


We’ll be unveiling the brand new FARM SHIRTS.  The kid shirts are cute as HECK.  Original doodles and unambiguous panache.


These are American Apparel shirts, made in USA, silk-screened locally by our secret agent at Comet Skateboards.  They use non-toxic, water-based inks.  There are 2 designs—one for kid shirts and one for adults.  We’re stocking 6 sizes and 6 colors all told.  $14 kid, $16 adult.  Wear yours proudly, Farmketeer!

Playground 3.0!

{ It Just Keeps Growing. }


Ithaca’s Orchard Playground started with the swings.  Even big kids are bumrushing the baby airplane.  Build it and they will come.


Last week we snuck in Version 2.0:  A real farm tractor for kids to explore, with a lookout deck and a climbing ramp.


Down the other side, a pokey old slide.  Supposedly for small humans, but it also works for fresh-picked apples.


And it works for big “kids,” too.  Here’s 3 generations of Ohio’s best, playing on Version 2.  So what’s next?  Version 3.0!


This weekend, we’ll have a new log-sandbox thing.  WE NEED YOUR TOYS!  If you have old sandbox toys like buckets or Tonkas, drop them off at the farm stand anytime.  We’ll make them available to all.


Well, folks.  Lots happening at the farm.  Zorro came fresh out of the grooming salon and jammed his nose into some mud.  Just to teach us some twisted lesson.  Hope to see you at The ‘Creek.

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There’s an App(le) for That:  Pick Your Own Macs—Only 99¢ a Pound When You Pick 10 Pounds!

PEOPLE ALWAYS WANT new stuff.  This week, they’re buzzing about the Apple Watch and other gizmos.  But nothing brings us comfort like vintage objects or classic reruns.  So we’re rolling out an old favorite, a sentimental snack from the 80s… McIntosh apples!


Here to launch Mac season is everybody’s #1 news hack.  “Hello, Local Food Lovers!  Pick your own Macs in the Vintage Orchard!”


“That’s where plump old trees offer sweet treats like the McIntosh apple, first introduced in 1820 and beloved ever since.”


“Yes, folks, we’re conducting an ‘apple watch’ of our own.  All signs say it is time to pick Macs.  Now not later!”


“Pick 10 pounds or more and pay only 99¢ a pound!  You’ll save $4,000 compared to buying 10 pounds of Macs on!”


“The crisp and refreshing McIntosh apple is a key ingredient in Orchard Ambrosia.  Nothing but cold-filtered fruit.”


“Orchard Ambrosia is the key ingredient in apple cider donuts!  Served on Saturdays 10-3, Sundays 10-4.”


“Speaking of donuts… Won’t you join us for the 3rd Annual Pigs-n-Apples Party?” [ FACEBOOK EVENT PAGE | web page ]


“You can practice for the party by carving pumpkins NOW!  Pumpkin patch is already open and LOADED WITH BIG ONES.”


“While you’re pumpkin hunting, cut your own sunflowers for a BUCK A PIECE!  Please cut some, we got a bazillion.”


“In the next field over, you can pick hot peppers.  You will also find hots and sweets stocked at the farm stand.”


“Plenty of beefsteak, cherry, and heirloom tomatoes to pick next to the pepper rows.  Romas are kicked!”


“Peaches are kicked, too.  It’s a hard pill to swallow.  But, as they say, There’s an apple for that!  Pick a peck and sublimate your sorrows.”


“If Mac Therapy doesn’t work, try jamming a bunch of $1 sunflowers into your psyche.  Hope to see you at The ‘Creek!”

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Pick Your Own Pears for 99¢ a Pound! Tomato and Peach Sales Extended; Fresh Donuts on Saturday.

DEAR FARM FANS, you are an expressive bunch.  Over the past 2 weeks you have told us in so many ways, “We aren’t emotionally ready for apples.  It’s still summer.  We want peaches.”


You’re not alone.  Even the chickens have their heads buried in the sand.  They will have no talk of apples.

02-P1230551Yet somebody picked last week’s featured apples.  The Sansas are gone.  BRAVO!  This week, pick Jonamacs.  (How to pick an apple.)

03-P1230563Now, about the peaches.  They are picked out for the moment.  One last wave of white peaches (pictured) will be ready NEXT week.

04-P1060785We are offering pre-picked peaches at the u-pick price, just so the inexorable wane of peach season doesn’t hurt so bad.

05-P1060581But we have something else—wonderful Bartlett pears!  (See recipes.)  Pick them for 99¢ A POUND.  Down to 75¢ if you pick a bushel!

06-P1180424Each year at this time, we “cross Bartlett Bridge” from peaches into apples.  The pears will not last long.  Pick pears, like, NOW!

08-P1180523Bonus prize for a lucky few—nectarines!  You will find only a handful of trees.  Score these “fuzz-free peaches” in the peach orchard.

09-P1190109Now let’s pause for a commercial break while Natasha does… whatever she does.  Okay, back to our scheduled broadcast…

10-P1180813Pick 4 pecks of Roma or Beefsteak tomatoes for the price of 3.  Folks, it is absolutely critical time to load up on tomatoes.

12-P1190927And apple cider donuts, Saturday 1-5 PM.  Just what Michelle Obama recommends for back-to-school lunches.  Donuts.

13-P1230568Our sunflower cup runneth over.  We got a million—you can get scissors at the farm stand and take home some living color.

Farm Buzz

{ Listen Up. }

14-P1180661These 2 lovebirds got married on the shores of our irrigation pond exactly 1 year ago today.  They transcended social barriers and their propinquity deepens with each passing day.  They’ve come back to our program to share an important message.

1-P1180662“You know that old joke—When someone gets a haircut, you ask them, ‘Did you get your ears lowered?'”

1-P1180664-001“Well that’s good old-fashioned fun as long as you don’t take it too far.  We’re here to say, DON’T BE A BULLY.”  See you at The ‘Creek.

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Peach, Pear, and Tomato Specials; More New Apples to Pick; Fresh Cider and Homemade Donuts!

LOYAL FARMKETEERS, we start this week’s program with a public service announcement.  Junk food junkies, please listen up.


“Kids, this is what will happen if you don’t eat your fruits and vegetables every day of the year!”


That’s why Farmer Bruno says, “If your great-grandma never heard of it, don’t eat it!”  And now for this week’s sweets and treats…


PEAR season starts today.  Pick your own Bartletts for only $1.50/lb, and if you pick a bushel, pay only 99¢/lb!


PEACH season continues.  Pick your own til the trees are clean.  Get gorgeous peaches at the stand for the u-pick price while they last!


TOMATO time is here.  Pick 4 pecks of Romas or beefsteaks for the price of 3!  That’s like $30 per bushel.


We’ve also picked tomatoes for you.  Get a peck of Romas for $10 or Field Runs for only $8.  Put up for winter sauce.


APPLE season is warming up.  New this week, pick your own Sansa apples.  Last week’s Zestars and Gingergolds… all picked!


To get ready for apple time, see our tutorial, “How to Pick an Apple.”  Pretty basic, but you might learn something.


CIDER season rolls along.  Each week the blend gets better as new apples come online.  Experience the seasons through cider.


It’s a slippery slope, but once you got cider, you got cider donuts.  We’ll serve them fresh on Saturday 1 til 5 PM!

13-P1160966It is a time of great bounty at the farm.  Still got plenty of peppers, melons, chard and squash to pick, and more treasures at the stand.

Farm Buzz

{ Side News. }


Some of you might remember Veggiestock here at the farm.  Recently, a terrific local news site, The Ithaca Voice, ran the story for the August anniversary of Woodstock.  Check out the Voice, “in-depth journalism that’s fun, fast and free.”


It has been amazing to see you all enjoying Playground Version 1.0!  Kids swinging and grownups, too!


It’s gonna get even better!  Version 2.0 will roll out next week.  What is Farmer Steve making?  Aren’t you insane with curiosity?  Well, you can see the work in progress this week.  Hope to see you at The ‘Creek.

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Peaches, Apples, Donuts, Cider and Your New Orchard Playground!

HAVE YOU NOTICED that we are having a wee spell of Scottish weather?  Mucky and cool?  Cool and mucky?


Let’s pretend it is still summer.  Come pick peaches.  We have tons of juicies at the stand if the orchard gets picked clean.


Come pick summer apples, too.  The Zestars are the first reds of the year.  Eat them fresh.  They are crisp, delicious, and sweet-tart.


Mom’s new signs are a huge help.  We will be hanging signs for all the varieties as they ripen.  The signs will match the brochure map.


After Zestar, go up the row til you find the new Gingergold sign.  You can download the map onto your phone.


Great news!  The Cidermeister is cranking out “Orchard Ambrosia.”  Nothing but cold-pressed, old-fashioned, unpasteurized cider.


And what happens when you spill cider in the batter?  Apple cider DONUTS!  We will serve them fresh on SATURDAY 1 til 5 PM.


And now for the vegetable portion of our show.  Come pick eggplant, peppers, and tomatoes.  Check the far ends of the rows.


We have hot peppers, sweet peppers, classic eggplant, Japanese eggplant, Fairytale eggplant, and tomatoes of many stripes.


It is a time of great bounty.  It is a joy to see friends picking local food each week.  Please come help us enjoy the harvest.

Farm Buzz

{ Swings. }

In Scotland they say, “As ye waggle, so shall ye swing.”  It means:  Wiggle your hips to get power when you strike a golf ball.


On the farm we say, “As ye swing, so shall ye pick.”  It means:  Warm up on the new swings, and you’ll pick better food!


We have always called the farm “Ithaca’s Orchard Playground.”  But now there really is a playground—Version 1.0!


Farmer Steve made a cute kid-plane.  The prop already fell off.  What the frack do you people want?!  Disney World?


We wrapped the chains in old tractor tubes—should prevent pinchy-pinchy of little fingers.  (But supervise your kids.)


The frame is solid locust wood from the farm.  The seats are cut from an old local oak that fell down.


This year’s Stumphenge mystery is solved!  But we won’t stop there.  Stay tuned for the next free upgrade of “Ithaca’s Orchard Playground.”  Look for Version 1.5 in the next couple weeks.  Meanwhile, hope to see you (swinging) at The ‘Creek.

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Very Special Apples, a New Wave of Peaches, and Summer Bounty.

THIS JUST IN—The fruits and vegetables of Indian Creek have a message to share with you.  A message of inspiration amidst the cynicism of American politics.  You heard it here first.













Okay, But What’s the Food?

{ Picking and picked. }


Now picking:

  • Peaches—Red Havens turning ripe now.
  • Apples—Esmeralda. One tree!  First come, first git!
  • Peppers—Hot and sweet. Tons.  Lots.
  • Squash—Zucchini, yellow squash, and pattypan.
  • Cukes—A few types bouncing back after heavy picking.
  • Tomatoes—More ripening with each passing day.
  • Eggplant—Japanese, classic, and fairytale.  Yum.
  • Flowers—Cut your own or take home a bouquet.
  • Basil—Fresh and smelly!

Now at the stand:

  • All that stuff in the picking list, plus…
  • Donut Peaches
  • Taters Red & Gold
  • Onions
  • Garlic
  • Blueberries
  • Canteloupe
  • Apple Pies while they last!
  • And more…


And now for the thrilling conclusion to the Stumphenge Mystery from July 25.  Sike!  It’s not quite ready.  Next week!  Promise!  This photo is your hint.  Hope to see you at The ‘Creek.

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Summer Fruits and Vegetables Go Swinging into August; Lots to Pick and Find at Stand.

A SUDDEN SQUALL hit the farm this week.  All the customers went scampering off.   A few sneaky fruits and vegetables seized the moment to give the new porch swing a whirl.

You can swing, too.  There are 3 swings at the stand.  A gentle way to warm up your spirit for picking.  And now for the week’s goodies…


Peach Status:  Ask which rows are picking when you arrive.  If those rows get thin, you can find juicy peaches down at the stand.


Apple Status:  The Pristines have seen lots of pickers.  You can probably still find some on the trees.  Dwarf Orchard, Row 7.


Eggplant Status:  Pick a bunch.  Lots of classic, Japanese, and fairytales.  Plenty at the stand if you need more for baba ghanouj.


Pepper Status:  Peppers galore… 10 types or more.  Sweets, hots, and the mystical/magical pepper between—El Poblano Magnífico.


Tomato Status:  7+ varieties, all just starting.  Wave #1 gave us some beauties.  Wave #2 is on the way.  Plenty at the stand, too.


Raspberry Status:  The heavy fruiting days are waning, but clever pickers are still finding berries, especially low near the ground.


Flower Status:  Lots to pick around the farm.  The lads and lasses at the stand have also created farmy bouquets in glass jars.


Fruit Summary:  Lovely fruit this year.  Fall apple crop is looking good.  Meanwhile, berries, peaches, nectarines, melons, pears and more.

09-P1230085Veggie Summary:  Cukes are coming back.  Tomatoes are kicking in.  Buckets of squash and barrels of peppers.  Please pick and eat.

Farm Buzz

{ Signage Stories. }

sToot your horn when you pass our new signs.  We’ve installed an official DOT Destination Sign on each side of the farm to raise awareness of turning traffic at the blind curve and the crest of the hill.


Signage work continues apace.  Our visiting artist (and mom) is painting 70 marvelous new markers for the Dwarf Orchard.  Going to make it so much easier to pick apples.  Thanks, Mom!


This is Farmer Sign Language for, “Come get your hands dirty.  Let’s pick the crops clean!”  Thanks for all your picking so far this season.  Summer rolls on.  Hope to see you at The ‘Creek.

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Now Picking — Peaches, Apples, Tomatoes, Peppers, Eggplant, Raspberries and More.

THE MOST AMAZING FAMILY came to the farm this week:  four persons in all, and each one picked 2 PECKS of vegetables.  More fiber than a freighter full of Twinkies.  Go, kids!


August brings the first true sense of bounty.  Tomatoes start to really turn, and we are swimming in vegetables.


By the way, do you work with someone prickly?  If you say the wrong thing, do you get an ouchy that makes you cry inside?


Remember, they have an inner life, too, and it might be tender and smoky like farm-fresh eggplant.  Get to know them.


We have an apple emergency.  The dogs can sense it.  They get all twitchy like before a hurricane.


The Yellow Transparent variety, first apples of the year, are DROPPING.  We absolutely need you pick some!


They are light and crisp summer apples.  Awesome for saucing.  “Put some up” now to get a head start.


Kids love them.  In child psychology, this phenomenon is known as NOM-NOM-NOM.  See the trance-like state.


The moment you have all been waiting for is kinda sorta here.  Peach picking has begun in multiple rows.


Some farms have no peaches this year.  We have peaches.  Remember how precious they are.  Take our tutorial flyer.


These savvy pickers—Chantelle, Rosie, and David—made a midweek sally to the plums.  There are only a few trees; nice haul.


Raspberries continue to impress.  The little first-year field gets pickers daily.  Embarrasingly big berries in some rows.

Farm Buzz

{ Side News. }


The thrilling conclusion to last week’s Stumphenge mystery will have to wait.  The thrill and the conclusion are not ready.


Cukes are picked out. But you can get product placement in our newsletter for $325,000/issue.  That’s what Kaley Cuoco makes for each episode of her sitcom.  And she’s on strike.


This week’s cover model appears without airbrushing.  At the farm, you can always “come as you are.”  So, get out here.  Summer is short as a mofo.  Hope to see you at The ‘Creek.

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New This Week — First Apples, Eggplant Sale, Pepper Picking, and a Stumphenge Mystery.

IF YOUR REPUBLICAN FRIEND SAID, “I just picked ripe apples in July,” wouldn’t you jump on your soapbox and spout your climate change harangue?  Wouldn’t you give them the business?


Just this once you can give it a rest.  Come pick our Yellow Transparent apples with an easy mind.  They were bred to ripen early.  They are already dropping from the trees.  Pick now, make sauce.


Eggplant season rolls ahead.  You can pick a half-peck of purple Japanese eggplant for only $4.  That’s 33% off!


In the eggplant field you’ll find the Fairytales.  They’re cute.  And they are delicious when sliced into coins and stir-fried.05-P1220698

Squash season bumbles along, too.  You can pick zucchini, yellow squash, and pattypan A.K.A. Space Invader squash.


If you only eat skinny-shaped foods (who are we to judge your cult?), these slinky cukes are for you.

07-P1220715U-pick pepper season starts TODAY.  Some of the hotties are ready.  Don’t rub your eyes after picking jalapeños and the rest.


Sweet Italian Frying Peppers are sneaky.  They look like giant chili peppers but taste mild like sweet peppers.


The First Church of Peppertown is ringing its bells.  The ecumenical “Green, Purple, and White” hymn is bonging away.

09-P1220625Persistent and/or lucky pickers have had a pretty good year picking raspberries.  You have to poke around a bit.


Down at the stand—blueberries, tomatoes, peaches, onions, garlic, canteloupes and all of those vegetables we mentioned above.


Do not pick the peaches—they are not ready for public picking.  We promise to shout “PICK PEACHES!” from the hilltops soon.

13-P1220607Tomatoes aren’t quite ready either.  Many of them are sized beautifully, and they will turn real soon.

Farm Buzz

{ Stumphenge News. }


Up near Stumphenge, we invite you back to the Iron Age.  We are clanging and banging with primeval slag.


We are hammering and yammering when we should be farming—but look at this pretty thing, bent and burnt and dubious.


Aren’t you insane with curiosity about what is happening?  Tune in next week for the stunning conclusion to this special 2-part Crop Alert.  Happy July to you all.  Hope to see you at The ‘Creek.

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