Saturday, April 29, 2017

2nds Apples on Sale

   With all the excess rain lately, the Neosho River will flood over the next few days.  The peak of the flood is predicted to occur on Mon. morning May 1, when water will be over our road, 95th St.  Hopefully the flood will recede quickly.
   The rain has curtailed our field work today, but yesterday one worker and I were able to start thinning the peach orchard.  Leah Porter goes to Chetopa High School, which has no school on Fridays, so she was able to work here.  We thinned 10 of the 12 trees of one of our earliest peach varieties, 'Surecrop'.  True to its name, this variety set a very good crop, and we did have to remove many young peaches where they set too close together, so the remaining peaches will grow to a good size and not develop fruit rot as they would if ripe peaches touched each other.
Leah Porter and I thinned one of our earliest peach varieties, 'Surecrop', yesterday.
   We also removed some young peaches with stinkbug damage, and a fair number with hail damage.  During last Tuesday night's rainstorm, we unfortunately had hail for about 1 minute, which dents the young fruit.  It caused some damage on the peaches, and even more on the young apples, so we'll have to thin off those damaged fruit.  Once we finish thinning the 140 remaining bearing peach trees, we'll start thinning the 180 or so apples trees, then the 80 or so pear trees.
   The peach crop looks even better now, praise God.  Overall we should have about 75% of a full peach crop this year, which means if all goes well, we should harvest about 17,000 to 18,000 pounds of peaches over the entire season.  That would be 2 1/2 times as many peaches as last year.
   During rainy weather, I'm still sorting apples in the sales building.  We still have many 'GoldRush' and some 'Enterprise' apples for sale.  Our #1 apples, with no damage, sell just as fast as I sort them.  A 20-lb. box of #1 apples still costs $23.15 + tax ($1.15 per pound + tax), which saves $1.00 off the per-pound price.
   We have many 2nds apples, with small cracks, cork spots or other surface damage, so we've just reduced the price on these.  A 20-lb. box of 2nds apples now costs just $14.82 + tax ($0.74 per pound + tax).  When you buy two boxes, each 20-lb. box of 2nds apples costs just $13.89 + tax ($0.69 per pound + tax), so that's $27.78 + tax  for 40 lbs. of 2nds apples.
We still have many 2nds apples, with small cracks, cork spots or other surface damage, of both 'GoldRush' (left box) and  'Enterprise' (right box).  So we've just reduced the price on these 2nds apples, which are great for making pie filling, applesauce, apple butter, etc.
    Cracked pecans are $15.28 per 4-pound bag + tax, which is equivalent to 6 pounds of in-shell pecans since the excess shells are blown off, and they're 78% nutmeats and just 22% shells.  We still have lots of fresh asparagus, sold harvested for $2.78 per pound + tax.
We still have lots of fresh asparagus for sale.  These are nice thick spears, and I snap asparagus off where it breaks easily, so almost the entire spear is tender and usable.
   Phone 620-597-2450 a day or so ahead, and leave a message on the answering machine saying the day and about what time you're coming.  Our phone rings in the house, and I check for messages when I come in from working in the orchards or sorting apples in the sales building.  If you wait to call until on your way here, I probably won't get your message before you come.  I do not have a cell phone or smart phone (cell reception is terrible here), nor is there a phone line to the sales building.
   When I'm thinning the peach orchard, I can't see or hear vehicles come in the driveway, so it's best to call ahead, but if you drop by, ring the bell on the sales building, which I can usually hear.
   Please remember, since there is no phone line to the sales building, we do not have a card reader.  So we can NOT accept credit cards or debit cards for payment.  We accept cash and checks from any state, so please bring your checkbook or enough cash to cover the amount of food you want to buy.