WEEK #37 SEPTEMBER 11, 2023

Dear Customers,

Cooler nights that seem to begin earlier and earlier, spider webs in every nook & cranny, and bees that hover over everything edible on the picnic table can only mean one thing.  .  .  This is the final week of summer!

Normally, I would be getting ready to pick apples or pears off the few select fruit trees in the back yard, but unfortunately, we got a late spring frost just about the time the blossoms popped out on the branches.  This kept the fruit crop to pretty much nothing.  Then too, we had such a bumper crop last fall that “biennial bearing” indicates there may be natural reasons why the fruit is much sparser this year.

Every year, I swear I’m going to plant less in my garden – making better utilization of minimal space to ensure the plants have enough room.  Then comes September and I realize my 3 garden boxes are nearly as crowded as a New York City tenement!  At least once a year, someone asks me, “why do you even bother to plant a garden?  You can get fresh produce whenever you want!”

The answer to that question is that “it’s not about the destination, it’s about the journey!”  Picking out seeds from the stack of catalogs I get in January and February, starting them indoors under grow lights, transferring them to larger pots and ultimately moving them to the greenhouse is how I keep my sanity during the cold winter months.  Once they’re in the ground, sometime in late May, its nothing more than regular watering and the occasional weeding.  Mother Nature handles the rest – until its time for the harvesting at which time I ask myself the same question found in paragraph #3!

Last Christmas, being so clever, I bought my wife an apple press as she had evinced a desire to try making her own cider.  That idea was rendered moot when we didn’t get more than six apples on all our trees combined.  Fortunately, we will be displaying several large field totes of fresh apples in our Produce Department very soon.   I’m afraid she’ll have to wait till then to start pressing!