Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Millions of peaches

I have 2 peach trees in my front yard (J.H. Hale and Hale Haven) and they are ripe for the pickin'. Well, one is. The other will be ready next week. Thank goodness, because one tree at a time is enough for me to deal with. BTW, peach trees are ideal for edible landscaping. They have pretty shapes, pretty leaves, pretty blooms and gorgeous fruit. Unfortunately, they don't live very long and are prone to infestation (we have some little wormies every year - we have to cut them out). I guess you take the bad with the good.

Keep in mind, this is after I pruned and thinned - buckets of thinned peaches. Unfortunately I could not reach the tops of the trees and so they have started bending over. Whoops. A few days ago I had to do an emergency thinning during a rainstorm, when I thought the weight of the rain was going to be the straw that broke the peach tree's back. I just ran out and started pulling them off and throwing them on the ground. Next year I will have to be BRUTAL.

The first small batch was harvested today. This picture shows about 5% of the first batch. These ones were damaged (bruised, pecked, pockmarked) and ripe so I want to process them first before they go bad. Some of them also have little wormies, which have to be cut out - I guess that's the price you pay for going organic, although I've heard there are some oil sprays that we can use. I just never got around to it.

Last year we harvested all the peaches at once (eight full grocery bags), then tried to figure out what to do with them (we gave them away and froze them). This year we are going to harvest in batches, picking all the ripe ones on successive days and processing them - canning, jamming, freezing, drying. We may lose a few more that way to birds and buggies, but that's ok - we have more than enough. Whew! The thought of it exhausts me. But a proper Peak Oil Hausfrau needs to learn how to do these things - they may be necessary next year.


Bee said...

Millions of Peaches....peaches for free. I'm going to be singing that all night in my sleep now. =)

Good luck with the picking and preserving of peaches. Yum!

Verde said...

Ohhhhm Ahhhhh
Peaches here are little green orbs. I have plans to travel to Grand Junction (100 miles from here) to get peaches first of September.

Best peaches I ever had were from N.C.

nsjones said...

Good for you going organic with your peaches. I've heard (but have no direct knowledge) that peaches are a difficult crop to keep insect free so your little wormies are probably normal.
Enjoy. They look good.

Lewru said...

Awesome! The first canning project of summer! When do you start?

Hausfrau said...

Luckily peaches are ready just in time for 4th of July weekend, when I will have hubby-help. I would so like to: can, jam, dry and fruit leather them!

anajz said...

All I can say is WOW! Just last night, I informed DH that I wanted to plant two pear trees in the front yard, but I might have to rethink this. The peaches look yummy.
Coming from a suburban-grass-filled background, I always thought it improper to have fruit trees in the front yard. I have decided that I don't care! I want fruit trees...and there is no place to plant any in the backyard.
DH is onboard, telling me that large fruit trees are on clearance in town...and he was willing to purchase all that they had remaining. Yipppppeee!

By the way, I have a little something for you over at my place.

Lamzeydievey said...

up until 2 yrs ago we lived in VA and there were peach orchards 'everywhere!. my kids and i would buy boxes of seconds at the end of the day and just eat them all day every day. i canned some but mainly made peach cobblers, baked peaches with oatmeal and honey on top, even peach oatmeal! it was heavenly.
the settlement cookbook has a great peach cobbler recipe btw- for those overripe/buggy fruits you just don't want to compost.

Melissa said...

peach pie is one of my favorites! and peach cobbler! I am feeling pretty jealous right now!