Harvest News


Hey, Big Dog!
Purred: Tue May 27, '08 8:57am PST 
I planted my cherry tree four years ago. It is a Craig's-Crimson Cherry, a sweet, semi-dwarf, self-fruitful, 800 hour, black cherry. I was concerned last year when it set almost no fruit and thought maybe it wasn't getting enough sun planted in my suburban back yard between mine and my neighbor's house. I let the birds have it all as an offering.

This year is different. Because the birds have REALLY developed an interest in the ripe fruit and because I had a hard time chasing the Northern Mocking Birds away once they discovered that bird tape won't hurt them (and neither will I), all the fruit came off this morning - almost 2 full 5 gallon buckets of really good eating cherries.

I will be spending part of today making jam and save just enough fruit aside to eat over the next few days. Mmmmm cherries.....


Maggie Pooter- Scoot
Purred: Tue May 27, '08 2:09pm PST 
Oh how do I love cherries. They are so darn expensive here, about 6.00 per pound!!!!

Insane I tell ya!

We will be going to our local peach and strawberry farmers here soon and I will be making strawberry preserves....yummy

Zeppelin J.- Dogg, ESQ

My Genetic Color- Code is e/e,- b/b.
Purred: Thu May 29, '08 12:31pm PST 
i love, love, LOVE cherry jam!!! i am so jealous!!!!


The best things- come in little- packages
Purred: Mon Jun 2, '08 10:42am PST 
That's awesome!

We planted a cherry tree this year, and its really not doing well. It had a few flowers and a few leaves on it in the early spring, but is now just kind of sitting there - dead looking. I don't know what to do about it.

Zeppelin J.- Dogg, ESQ

My Genetic Color- Code is e/e,- b/b.
Purred: Thu Jun 12, '08 6:34am PST 
my mom has two cherry trees...not sure of the variety, but they are tart pie cherries. one of them developed some sort of root rot and fell over. she said she picked 29 1/2 lbs of cherries!!!! she's making cherry preserves and pies...too bad she lives 8 hours away, i won't get any pies!!!

i finally have my first little bitty green tomatoes, i'm so excited. i have one Early Girl tomato plant; i've never tried this variety before, but thought i would this year since they are supposed to fruit and ripen first. i'm excited. i also have a big beef, a celebrity, an aussie, and several better boys. yay for home-grown tomatoes!


Hey, Big Dog!
Purred: Tue Jul 1, '08 9:55am PST 
I have made the first taste of the cherry liquor and cherry brandy that I put up on June 1st - the brandy is delicious already, the liquor needs something, next year perhaps I'll put a little lemon peel with or some star anise.

Trader Joe's had lovely kumquats on sale, so I am trying kumquat liquor using the same recipe as the cherry liquor. It's already sublime and still gets another month soaking on the fruit. I'm thinking how it will taste in a margarita, or with a splash of club soda...

Peaches are ready, or at least one was. While watering today I saw one that was ripe looking and when I checked on it, it came off in my hand. I pulled about 2/3 of the tiny fruits off the tree after it set and I have been rewarded with peaches just short of softball size. I'll cut into this peach tomorrow because they always benefit from 24 hours on the kitchen counter.

Our sweet 100 and baby grape tomatoes are just starting to show color, so I should be up to my elbows in salad tomatoes in about a week or so. I also planted Roma, Beefsteak, an orange striped one, Better Boy, Lemon Boy, and Tomotilla. The plants are covered with fruit, but no color yet. I read that tomatoes like calcium, so I've been giving them cactus fertilizer every two weeks. These are the best looking plants I've had in a while. I'm trying a new trelising system this year and I'm already loving the results and the ease of bug picking and harvesting.

The eggplant are already overproducing there is fruit on the white, Japanese and globe. The peppers are covered with fruit, jalapeno, anaheim, pasillo all doing well, the giant jalapeno is bushy and beautiful but hasn't set fruit yet.

Everything in the squash family is green and happy, but not particularly overachieving. I know squash are heavy feeders and this bed may be nutrient deprived by this point. Note to self add compost and micro nutrients when you button up the veggie garden in the late fall.

Zeppelin J.- Dogg, ESQ

My Genetic Color- Code is e/e,- b/b.
Purred: Wed Jul 2, '08 12:10pm PST 
Dutch, I didn't know you were such a sot! Bol. How do you make liquor, anyways?

Kumquats, omg, I haven't had those in YEARS. Like, 11 years, to be exact. When I was a kid living in Florida, my little friend down the street had a kumquat tree. I'd eat the hell out of those things, skin and all.

We had a loquat tree in our back yard, and I love those things too. And leechy nuts, mmmmm. And star fruits. Man, I miss Florida.


Hey, Big Dog!
Purred: Wed Jul 2, '08 1:19pm PST 
I use a large mason jar and add 1 cup of sugar. I pack it with clean fruit to just below the top. For the cherries I popped the seed out. For the kumquats I poked them a few times with a BBQ skewer. Then I filled the jar almost to the top with vodka. For fruit brandy I don't add sugar. I place a small glass bowl that is weighted with pebbles to keep the fruit down under the vodka, and then lay a towel over the top and put them in my pantry. In two weeks I stir to incorporate any sugar that remains on the bottom. The liquor should be ready in 2 months. Then I strain the liquid through a chinois strainer, put it in clean bottles and store them in the pantry until fall/winter. The liquor mellows. I primarily use it in cooking to deglaze pans and add flavor to sauces. It's also lovely in tea.