Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Orchard Closed.

The orchard will be closing at 12pm today, for the season.

Thank you so much for all your business this year!  

We so enjoyed seeing and visiting with you all.  
I hope you have eaten apples to your hearts content.

Now to wait patiently for next season!

Friday, November 22, 2013

Ice Apples

 You've heard about them, you've seen them advertised in the newspaper, well.... they are here!!!

Ice Apples!

If you've never heard of them, the blog, my northwestexperience.blogspot.com has this to say about them: 

"Technically they are your basic Fuji apple, very sweet with good crunch. What makes these different is they are picked during the last days of October - the last of the season - and leaving them on the tree a little longer, allowing the center of the apples to crystallize a bit, leaving a pocket of juiciness in the center. This makes the entire apple just a bit sweeter.
Check out this You Tube video and article about ice apples if you' ve never heard about them!

Come try them and see what you think!

To find them in the orchard, look for the 3 rows labeled Fuji, and walk 3/4 of the way down to the far end.  The trees are loaded down at the end!

We also have:

Pink Lady
Gold Rush
Granny Smith

Still all nice and crisp!

There are also some Golden Delicious and Red Delicious out there but getting on the softer side.  
Golden Delicious would still be fine for cooking though.

Remember this is our last weekend officially open!  After this weekend, it will be self-serve until I post otherwise.  Just pay at the office when you leave.


Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Still time to pick so you can make that Thanksgiving apple pie!

Today's post could be the same as the last one!  We still have lots of apples available.

Pink Lady
Granny Smith
Gold Rush
Golden Delicious
Red Delicious

All above are still nice and crisp and fresh.  

You could still find some Jonagold out there if you look.

To find where the most apples are left to pick, walk down to the orange cone and start picking there.  The farther down the row you go, the better the picking!  The far ends of the rows are usually still loaded and fast picking!

We do have some apples pre-picked up by the office if you'd rather go that route.  $12/bucket for those.

Last day the orchard will be open for the season is 
Wednesday, Nov 27th.

We will still have apples after that date if you really still want some but the orchard will be self-service.  Just stop and pay at the office when you are done picking.  We will post again when the orchard is totally closed to the public so check back here if you are uncertain.

Friday, November 1, 2013

To be a kid again.

What fun there is to have in the orchard!

We still have many varieties of apples available out in the orchard!

Lots of these left in prime condition:

Pink Lady
Granny Smith
Gold Rush
Golden Delicious
Red Delicious

Most ripe and really good for sweet applesauce right now:
Jonagold (Four rows left.  Walk down to orange cone and start picking apples there.)

We will still be open for several more weeks.  Last year we were open up to Thanksgiving.  Looking about the same this year too.

Monday, October 21, 2013

Pink Lady are now ready! Yum.

 The wait is over!  
Pink Lady apples are finally ripe.  
Always the last one to ripen, but SO worth the wait.

Pink Lady apples are a great all-around apple.  Great for eating, they are part sweet but also have more of a tangy-tart kick.  They are great for baking and applesauce too.  Plus even better they have always been the best storage apple of the all the winter apples we grow.  At least that is what I have found in my experience.  Come check them out!  

Other apple availability:

Braeburn, Fuji, Granny Smith, Melrose,  Jonagold, Gold Rush, Golden Delicious, Red Delicious - LOTS LEFT OF THESE!

Gala- Tiny bit left but you will only find them if you ask us.  A few trees in the older section of the orchard have them left.

Rome, Ruby Jon - All picked.

Thank you to all that came out to our first ever Apple Festival!  We are planning on having it again next year!  We all had so much fun and so did you guys it seemed!  Just nice to have a chance to talk with all of you more.

One thing I learned from our applesauce tasting is that Ruby Jon apples making AMAZING applesauce.  I thought I loved Jonagold applesauce but Ruby Jon is even better!  Unfortunately Ruby Jon apples have all been picked this year but I am already looking forward to next year!!

Here are some pictures to give you an idea what the festival was all about for those of you who couldn't make it.

Getting all set up in the morning.

Apple tasting.  
Fun to be able to taste everything right there and compare.

 Apple crafts for the kids.

Kids checking out the inside of a combine!

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Granny Smith and Gold Rush are ready to pick!

Granny Smith

Granny Smith are a well known apple!  They are a tart apple that are great for pies.  They are also great for caramel apples because the sweetness of the caramel and tartness of the apple balance each other out.  These are also considered a winter apple, so they are great for storing.
And a select few of you love them for eating :)
My grandpa always like to throw one of these in the mix when making apple cider to give it a little bit of zing.

Gold Rush
Gold Rush are a winter apple too, so also great for storing.  Also great for eating fresh, salads, cider and cooking.  Gold Rush apples also resist browning so another reason why they are great for salads.  They won't brown as much as other apples.
Gold Rush have a tart taste but also with some sweetness.  

Other apples availability:

Golden Delicious, Jonagold, Fuji, Braeburn - Lots of these varieties left.

Red Delicious, Melrose-  They are all gone off the main row but lots of both of these left in older section of orchard behind the shop.  Ask if you can't find them.  

Gala-All gone off the main two rows, but still some nice crispy ones left in the older section of the orchard.  Look right behind the shop in the first 2 rows, or please ask and we will take you to them!

Rome- If you walk all the way to the far end, you will find some left.  They will likely be gone by this weekend though.

Ruby Jon, Honeycrisp - All have been picked. 

Don't forget about our 1st Apple Festival which is this next weekend!
Saturday, October 19th.  10am-2pm

We will have apple tasting of all varieties that are ripe.
Applesauce samples,
Apple crafts for kids,
Apple orchard tours at 10:30am, 11:30am, 12:30pm and 1:30pm. 
All free!

And it even looks to be sunny!!!


Sunday, October 6, 2013

Many new varieties open for picking! Plus more good news!

We've gotta share the news!  
Baby Kallan is here!  She arrived October 1st, happy and healthy!  

In other happenings....!  

We are having our first Farm Apple Festival on 
Saturday, October 19th from 10am-2pm!!


   Apple slice samples so you can compare all the varieties ready.
  Fresh homemade applesauce tastings.
  Craft activities for the kids.
  Apple tours, where you can learn about the growing process and ask questions!  Great for both kids and adults.

   And maybe a few more surprises up our sleeve!

   Come join us Rain or Shine.

Ok onto apples news, I know that is why you are here :)

We've got some new apples ready for the pickin!


Best known as a great baking apple.  Beautiful, firm apple that keeps it shape and tangy flavor in baking.  It is also good for cider, salads and eating.


One of the first winter apples to be ready.  And when I call them winter apples, that means they are one of the better ones for storing!  
These are a great eating apple, firm and crispy.  Known as a wonderful dessert apple, used for baking.  Also good for applesause and salads.


Best for eating but also excellent for salads, pies, sauce and baking.  Larger size apple.  Greenish/Red stripes that has the points on the bottom like a Red Delicious.


These are between almost ripe and ripe, depends on who you ask :)  Wait a week and they will be a bit sweeter, but they are very close if you must have them now!
Best loved for eating out of hand, but also great for applesauce and salads.

   Red Delicious:

Best for eating.  These are way better than the grocery store.  There is actually a crunch to them, not just mush!

Still lots of Golden Delcious, Jonagold, Melrose.

Dwindling amount of Gala but still some available.  We have some random Gala trees too so ask about those when you get here.

Honeycrisp- Might find a few if you hunt and peck.

Ruby Jon's are getting picked.  Get them soon if you want some.

Coming Soon: Granny Smith, Gold Rush and Pink Lady.

Friday, September 27, 2013

All Golden Delicious rows are ripe!

Golden Delicious are ready for the picking!  
We have 3 rows of them plus many, many loaded trees in the older, front section of the orchard. 

Golden Delicious have a mild but sweet flavor.  They are very popular to use in pies and baking because it keeps it shape well when cooked.  They are also a good eating apple.  

We still have a ton of beautiful Melrose and Jonagold apples out there.  The three Jonagold rows all the way to the back next to the railroad tracks are loaded and BEAUTIFUL!!  Check them out!  You will not be disappointed.

(Pictured below are the Jonagold)

Ruby Jon - half a row left.

Gala- You'll find some easily enough if you walk halfway down.  (plus some random trees behind the shop so ask if you want us to show you those!) They are perfect still for applesauce but getting a little less crunchy for eating. 

Honeycrisp- if you look inside the trees at the far ends of the rows, you will find some small ones if you are motivated.

All pears are sold out for the season.

Fun time with kids!!

And to wet your appetite....We have added an Apple Crepe Filling recipe to our Recipe Tab.   Coming soon we will also have a recipe for Apple French Toast Bake thanks to our resident food connoisseur Sherri Gentry!

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Ruby Mac apple have all been picked.

Quick Update:

Ruby Mac apples have all been picked! 

But do not worry, there are LOTS of other varieties still:

Early Variety of Golden Delicious
Ruby Jon

And also still lots of D'Anjou pears!

Friday, September 13, 2013

Pre-picked D'Anjou pears available now.

D'Anjou Pears are pre-picked and waiting for you!

D' Anjou pears are a great all-purpose pear.  They are great for slicing into salads, baking into pies, pureeing for sauces and beverages, and of course eating fresh from hand.

They have a mild flavor and firm texture, but still sweet and tasty.
These pears are picked straight from the tree, because of that they need to be chilled at least 2 weeks in the fridge to ripen properly.  After they have been chilled, set them on your counter and let them ripen from there. Otherwise, like I did last year, you will wait and wait, and then they will go from crunchy to just rotting in the bucket.  When you buy these at grocery stores, they have already gone through the chilling process, so they ripen like you would expect a Bartlett pear too.  Just wanted to give you a heads up!

D'Anjou pears also do not turn yellow when they are ripe like a Bartlett pear.  So don't judge by the outside color if they are ready to eat.  "Apply the thumb to the pear flesh just below the point where the stem joins the fruit. When the flesh beneath your thumb yields evenly to gentle pressure, it is time to eat your pear. If you have to push more than slightly, it is not ready yet," explains the OSU extension service website.

Fun fact from Wikipedia: D'Anjou purée is used for Jelly Belly's Juicy Pear flavor of jelly bean.[2]

Check back to the previous post for what apples are ready now.  There are many varieties available now!

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Ruby Jon, Liberty, Melrose and Jonagold all ripe now.

I can't keep up with all the apples coming ripe!  Apples definitely don't seem to be ripening as spread out as last year.  But I guess I shouldn't be as surprised because the same thing happened with all the other crops we grew this year.  Hopefully you guys don't miss out on any of your favorite apples because of it though!!!

More Apples that just came ripe:


Melrose are a great baking apple.  They keep their shape and flavor after baking .  It is a great apple for baking whole.  They are a nice eating apple too, especially if you let it sit for a bit after being picked.  Melrose are a cross between a Red Delicious and Jonathon apple.
We have a row of Melrose that is a few years old, and we have some scattered trees in the older portion of the orchard.  Ask about those if you'd like them.

Ruby Jon:

Very similiar looking to RubyMac.  Ruby Jon are part Jonathon variety which some people really love to cook with.  Ruby Jons make great applesauce and are used for general baking but are enjoyed as an eating apple too.


We have a small amount of these but they are quickly becoming a customer favorite.  They have a great crisp, sweet flavor to them.  Very crunchy.  I read they are one of the best for apple butter too.  Very yummy eating apple.



Check the post from yesterday for more about Jonagold.  But they are a great overall apple that are great for eating, baking and applesauce.  Love them!

And of course still lots of Gala, Honeycrisp, Ruby Mac, and an Early Variety of Golden Delicious.

Monday, September 9, 2013

Jonagold Apples just came ripe!

Jonagold Apples are ripe now!  

I am bias but these are my favorite because they are such a good all around apple.  But of course everyone has their own opinion :)

Sweet apple with a nice crunch.  They are great for applesauce, pies, and of course, eating.

I can't wait to make a batch of applesauce with these!

Still have lots of Honeycrisp, Ruby Mac, Early Variety of Golden Delicious and Gala.

For a guess, the next apple to ripen will be the Melrose.  I will let you know when those come up!

It has been fun talking with you all out in the orchard!  One customer I was talking to was picking apples to make 125 mini pies for her son's wedding coming near the end of September.  They will give them out as favors for the guests, if I understood correctly.  WOW, I would love to see those!  What a great idea and what a fun project to take on. 

Other Farm Happenings:

Last week, we got a few new grass seed fields planted.  Then the next day was the big downpour/thunder/lightening so hopefully all our seed didn't wash away!  We will plant another field next week I think.

This week, we will probably start working on taking down the net over 7 acres of our blueberries.  We put it up most years to keep out all those pesky birds that feast on our blueberries.  We use a scissor lift to help the job along.  It takes about a week to roll it all up.  I think I have posted pictures of the process in the past but I can post more once they start taking down the net.

We also finally finished our last machine picking of blueberries!  This year was definitely one of our most stressful years of getting all the blueberries picked in a timely manner.  Thankfully we survived and like my Grandpa always says, "At least being a farmer, we always hope next year will be better!"  It definitely could have been worse too so we are thankful for what we were given!

On a side note, we are also waiting for another grandchild to be born!!  She is one day overdue today so it is exciting times.  Then we have another grandchild coming in about a month.  Also another girl! I think my parents think they are pretty lucky right now!

Well that is all for now!  See you out in the orchard this week!

Monday, September 2, 2013

Honeycrisp, Ruby Mac and Early Variety of Golden Delicious are now ripe!

New varieties ready today!

For all those who we told the Honeycrisp would be ready in 2 weeks...SURPRISE!  Looks like they are ready now!  They snuck up on us.  They are ripe for the picking on the 3 main rows on the eastern-most side!

Ruby Mac and our early ripening variety of Golden Delcious are ready too!  So many good kinds to choose from right now!

Honeycrisp are probably our most raved about apple.  They are very sweet and juicy, plus they are a steal of a deal compared to a grocery store prices. 
They are best for eating out of hand, but also great for applesauce and pies.  They don't break down when you cook them so if that is what you are looking for, this is the apple for you.

Ruby Macs are a beautiful red apple with white flesh.  When you rub them against your pant leg, they just sparkle!  They are great for eating and baking.  If you are looking for a Macintosh apple, this is part Macintosh, part Rubinstar.  They have a heavier on the tart flavor but a touch of sweetness.  They are becoming a customer favorite.

We have a early ripening variety of Golden Delicious, actually called Smoothie.  To keep it simple though, we just call them Golden Delicious.  They get a pretty pink blush and are super sweet and crunchy.  These are my favorite of all the Goldens.  They just seem to have something special about them. 
Goldens are a good all-around apple, good for baking and eating.  They keep their shape when cooked.
Follow the signs to find them, because they start halfway down the row.  The first part of the row are also Golden Delcious but ignore them because they ripen later.


Happy Customers with their Honeycrisp apples!

That is one fun thing about having a u-pick orchard.  You sure get to meet lots of neat people!

Friday, August 30, 2013

Special Labor Day Hours. CLOSED THIS SUNDAY!

Special Labor Day Weekend Hours

Friday 8am-8pm
Saturday 8am-8pm
Monday 8am-8pm 

Galas are ready for picking now!

 Determination even when it is raining!

Lots of yummy applesauce will be at their houses!

Other Farm Happenings:

Our corn was picked overnight last night.  A little bit more this morning and it will be all harvested.  The truck drives alongside the picker until their load is full and another truck takes their place. The truck then takes the corn to the cannery and comes back for another round!  Sometimes if it too wet, you have to pull a tote (a big bin) with a tractor instead alongside the corn picker, and then dump into the trucks.  Thankfully it was dry this year!

No better sight to a farmer than a harvested field!

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Gravenstein update

Gravensteins apples are official all gone.  Hope all you Gravensteins diehards picked what you needed!

But don't worry everyone else, we still have lots of sweet Gala apples and tons more varieties to come!

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Gala, Ripe and Ready. Bartlett Pears are gone for the year.

Figured I would entice you with more Gala pictures!

 Check the previous post for what Galas are best used for!

 My helper picking pears.  He sets them in the bucket and says "Gentle."  I think we have imprinted it in his mind.  :)

Bartlett Pears are gone for the year.  We will have more pears later in the season.  I will post when those come ripe.

Gravensteins are few and far between so if you are coming out only for this variety, then it will be a gamble for how many are left.

Don't forget to check us out on Facebook!