Saturday, September 22, 2012

A long needed update

Wow, I was planning on doing a fruit guide and keeping the blog updated throughout the year, but the general business of the season caught up with me. So here we are now in September and my last update was in July. Well, here's what's in season:

Golden Delicious--The old favorite, sweet, with a pear-like flavor. Great for eating and cooking.

Dixie Red--A Red Delicious type, a crisp, flavorful eating apple.

MacIntosh--Sweet-tart, good for eating and sauce.

Chesapeake--A natural cross of Rome and Red Delicious, great for baking, decent eating.

Gold Rush--We're spot picking these. Right now, they're hard and tart, but toward the end of the season, they'll sweet up considerably.

We're still waiting on Arkansas Black, Winesap, and Black Twig to ripen, as well as Granny Smith. All things considered, we've had a good season in spite of a late frost, drought, and excessive heat. The pruning job we have a head of us is considerable. If anyone is interested in buying some apple wood, we'll have plenty in the next couple months. Email us at

Markets we're currently doing: Wyoming on Tuesday, Northside on Wednesday, Madeira on Thursday, Anderson and Findlay on Saturday, and Hyde Park on Sunday.

Friday, June 22, 2012

Backyard Orchard Fruit Guide

This year we're going to do a fruit guide to keep everyone up to date on what's in season. Here's what we have at the moment: 

Our first apple, Pristine. It's juicy and tart and very thin-skinned. It's an excellent apple sauce apple, and it's great for pies. Recommended for eating only if you like your apples tart. 

Dutchess of Oldenburg. We won't have this apple at market because we only have one tree. It's an antique apple that's really only good for pies. Notice its knobby shape.

 Here's a close up of a Dutchess apple.

On the left is a peach variety called Jersey Dawn, on the right is Flaming Fury. Both are sweet, yellow clings.

Dennis at work washing apples.

Monday, June 18, 2012

Markets for June

We're about to start our third week of farmers' markets. Look for us at Loveland on Tuesday, Northside on Wednesday, Madeira on Thursday, Anderson on Saturday, and Hyde Park on Sunday. Our current peach variety is Flaming Fury, a sweet, yellow cling. We should have some Pristine apples this week, which is a very tart early apple good for sauce and pies.

Monday, June 4, 2012

Some pictures, update

Here are some pictures of growing fruit. More pictures, including peaches, coming. We will be at Northside on Wednesday this week.

Niagara grapes, we'll have plenty this year.

 Dayton apples, a great early summer variety, will be ready early August.
 Dad and I examining Pristine apples.
 Pristine, a disease resistant type of yellow transparent. Tart and good for sauce.
 New Olympic pears, will be mature in a couple of years.
 Frost ring on a William's Pride. Purely cosmetic, doesn't affect flavor.
 Mutsu, which will be enormous.
 Magnus pears. Will be ready in August.

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Markets This Year

These are the markets we'll be attending this year. Some of these market we won't start in June because we won't have enough fruit. I'll update next week when we'll be starting. The cool weather might slow down the ripening of peaches, but it's possible we'll have fruit a week from now. The early bloom has moved fruit along quicker than normal, but we're experiencing a bad fireblight epidemic on the pears and apples right now, which will hopefully stop, so it's difficult to estimate how much fruit we'll have. Without further adieu, these is the list:

Tuesday - Wyoming and Loveland
Wednesday - Northside and Bellevue
Thursday - Madeira
Saturday - Findlay, Anderson, West Chester, possibly Bellevue
Sunday - Hyde Park

So that's the tentative list. Four markets on Saturday may not be possible. But anyways, hopefully you'll see us at a market near you in a week!

Saturday, May 26, 2012

Market Season Is Approaching

In about three weeks, Backyard Orchards should be coming to a farmers' market near you with peaches and summer apples. The late freeze in April thinned out a few varieties and left some russeting, but we have a decent crop of fruit because of the phenomenal bloom. We will be light on Asian pears, Honeycrisp, Gala, and Enterprise, unfortunately, but we'll have plenty of Pristine, Dayton, Red Free, William's Pride, Jonafree, Criterion, and Gold Rush, as well as many more. We'll have a normal crop of peaches and European pears.

I'll be back soon with a list of what markets we'll be attending this year.

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Apple Bloom and New Trees

We are at petal fall with the apples, and it's the best bloom we've ever seen. Here's some pictures.
 We picked eight bushels off of the Arkansas Black tree above.
 Napoleon beside a new Gold Rush tree.

 A much better picture of blossoms.

 Some of our Olympic pears. We planted one-hundred of these guys.
Oliver sniffing a Honey Crisp.

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Budding and Bloom

Everything's budding out and the plums and peaches are blooming already. Here's some pics. 

Pristine, one of our earliest apples, budding out. 
Below is a Red Heart plum in full bloom. Plenty of bees buzzing about. 

Santa Rosa plum in full bloom. We had to cut a lot off of it because of black knot disease.

Here's where we're planting the new pear orchard. 

Enterprise apples budding. We should have a great crop. 

As you can see, they're pretty far along. 

Here's Dennis in the old peach orchard. 

Peaches in full bloom are gorgeous.

More peaches.

Asian pear buds. 

Dennis's tractor and sprayer. 

 The house. 
 Some of our grape vines after a pruning.

Saturday, March 17, 2012

Almost out...

We're about out of apples. We're down to around twenty bushels of Gold Rush, so if you want some, come to Northside on Wednesday or Findlay on Saturday. The next two weeks will be the last chance to catch us until late June.

If we can get by the next week or so without a hard frost, I think we'll have a great year. Plums have flowered, peaches are beginning to bloom, and apples and pears will probably start by the end of the week.

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Winter Update

We've just finished pruning everything, which was quite the undertaking. The Enterprise were certainly the worst, as they're very vigorous growers and we have river-bottom soil, which means that everything is bigger than it should be. About time to rent the wood-chipper and get to chipping...

We're still at Northside in the Presbyterian Church on Hamilton, Wednesdays from four to seven. Gold Rush is the main apple variety and it's the apple I'd pick if I wanted to be stuck with one apple. Sweet-tart, tangy with a very crisp texture, Gold Rush is probably my favorite apple. Apple butter is available as well.

If you're in the Madeira area, head out to Turner Farmers - - where you'll find our apples and much more.

Wednesday, January 18, 2012


We are still at Findlay market on Saturdays and Northside on Wednesdays. If you don't see us in the market shed on Saturday, check inside the market house. We've been setting up around the lobster tank.

We still have Gold Rush, Black Twig, Fuji, and Braeburn varieties. This spring we will be planting 30 new Asian pear trees, 30 new peach trees, and 20 Stanley plums, so in the next couple years we'll have more variety.