Farm is open 7 days a week 8:00 to 8:00 rain or shine • Pick corn • Pick Zestar apples • Pick pears (maybe?) • Pick tomatoes • Pick peppers • Pick flowers • Fresh donuts Friday, Saturday, Sunday 11:00 to 6:00 • No eggplant to pick for a while • No peaches to pick this weekend • Goodies at stand = peaches, apples, tomatoes, peppers, garlic, potatoes, honey, syrup, pottery, flowers, slushees • COVID protocols include (1) Keep SAFE distance, (2) wear MASK in closer quarters, (3) monitor your KIDS, (4) we provide CONTAINERS • Drive slowwwwly on the farm • Thank you for being kind and gentle locavores
DEAR FARMKETEERS: Everyone is looking for new tools right now, improvising in this extraordinary crisis. Scratching and scrabbling, trial-and-erroring, ad lib-ing and ad hoc-ing. Farmers are pretty good at that. Professional contrivers and devisers and MacGyvers.
New this year: pick your own corn-on-the-cob. Everyone needs a few cobs in their pandemic toolkit. Serve it at homeschool to sweeten up algebra “class” on the back porch. Slather if you must, but even better without butter. No salt required. Fresh off the stalk. 50¢ an ear.
Pick Zestar apples! Most of you won’t feel the apple-picking spirit til September, but these are worthy early apples. Very pretty, round, rosy red apples. The flesh is juicy and crisp, with a sprightly zest (hence the name) that sweetens with caramel sugars. They store well for six to eight weeks, and are firm enough to please most bakers. Advanced apple data: Zestar comes from the breeding program at the University of Minnesota. It is a cross of State Fair and MN 1691 (Conell Red x Goodland), and it was released in 1999. “Zestar!” is the trademark name; the cultivar itself is called Minnewashta. How to avoid heartbreaking waste in apple season: Pick with 2 hands, steadying the branch and/or nearby apples with your non-dominant hand, then twist off your target apple with your best paw. Don’t let an apple fall, then knock another apple below, causing a chain reaction. Multiply that effect by thousands of pickers… and you got a defeated apple farmer. Please read our Farm School tutorial, How to Pick an Apple.
Pick your own pears – maybe. There were some Flemish Beauty and others around when we looked. They all could be picked by the time you get here! Just ask at the stand and we will try to direct you to what’s ripe and ready.
Peaches are NOT picking! You all performed an exemplary orchard bumrush last week – totally wiping out the first wave. Stay tuned for possible future waves. We will announce if we spy another round of ripening.
There are peaches at the stand :-) You’ve been tearing through them and we will try to stay stocked for another week.
Pick your own tomatoes and peppers. Many varieties, some ready, some ripening. Hard to tell you which types you will find in abundance when you arrive. Please enjoy exploring around. Generally the hot peppers won’t be red yet.
No eggplants for u-picking right now, could be a few weeks! They are tied up in traffic with all the students flowing into town. (Actually, a few folks picked hundreds of baby eggplants despite our pleas. Let’s hope mask-wearing pleas are met with better compliance as town fills up again!) You should be able to find eggplant at the farm stand.
Look what our roving customer-columnist posted this week. Thank you @samanthanfountain for sourcing from so many local growers.
Something to do with tomatoes: Stuff them. Not nearly as Instagrammatic as Samantha’s creations. But tasty.
Flowers: Cut your own bouquets in the field by the stand, and other spots around the farm. Flowers include zinnia, snapdragon, celosia, ageratum, gomphrena, scabiosa/pincushion, cornflower/bachelor buttons, dianthus/carnations, strawflower, aster, marigold, verbena, and statice. You can also get them at the stand in bouquets (nice jars included) assembled by fruit farmers.
Every weekend is donut time. Donuts are rolling off the Mark 2 Donut Robot every Friday, Saturday, and Sunday 11:00 to 6:00 – expanded from 5:00! Nick the Donut Kid is churning out these freshly fried toroids of fructotic splendor – optionally sprinkled with cinnamon sugar. “A sprinkle of SIN, SUGAR.”
Thank you to whoever left us a full box of apple juice in the orchard grass. Just what we needed! Good news is Steve thinks we will have the first jugs of Orchard Ambrosia – naturally sweet, cold-pressed, and unpasteurized – on Labor Day weekend. Fingers crossed
Love to y’all. Hope to see you at The ‘Creek.