Sunday, August 18, 2013

Pie apples

Red Free (sweet) and William's Pride (sweet/tart) are available for cooking. 20 bucks a bushel at market, 15 at home. Both are great for apples sauce/butter and pies!

Monday, July 29, 2013

Facebook post

I posted some new pictures of summer apples on facebook--click here.

Friday, July 12, 2013

We have apples and peaches!

We have Pristine apples now, which are similar to Yellow Transparent and Lodi. They are tart, but have enough sweetness to be decent eating. They are great for apple sauce or baking. We have a large crop of them, so if anyone wants a bushel, let me know!

Friday, June 21, 2013

Season starting!

We will be at the Northside Farmers' Market this Wednesday with our first peaches. If we have enough, we hope to also be at Madeira on Thursaday, Anderson on Saturday, and possibly Hyde Park on Sunday. 

We'll have peaches from now until August, apples starting late July, and pears during the middle of August.

Saturday, May 11, 2013

Developing Fruit

Just thought I'd add some pictures of developing apples, peaches, and pears. It's going to be a great year.

Little apples, Criterion, I believe. 

Some apples bloom unevenly, which means they'll be harvested unevenly. Above are secondary blossoms. 

King blossoms, the first blossoms, which develop into large fruit. 

More secondary blossoms.

A size comparison. 

One of the winecrisp trees we just planted. They're already flowering. 

Another winecrisp. 

One of the Asian pears we planted last year that was damaged by deer. It's growing back nicely.

Young Asian pears. 

Peaches, Madisons, I think. 

More Madisons. 

A vigorously growing peach planted last year. 

Honeysweet European pears, a variety we've had trouble growing in the past, since they always seem to get fireblight disease or scab. I think we'll have some this year. 

Magnus, a European pear. 

A deer damaged peach growing back. As you can tell, we have a bit of a deer problem, despite having three dogs. 

One of the old peaches that served as a young buck's scratching post. 

Saturday, April 27, 2013

More Pictures of Bloom

I should've taken some pictures today, since all the trees are farther along now than they are in these photos, but it was overcast all day.

Sunday, April 14, 2013

Slow Bloom Pictures

Close up of a peach blossom. 

One of the old peach trees in bloom. 

Close up of an Asian pear getting ready to flower.

Bee hives at the top of the orchard.

I scored the trees last year with a knife to induce bloom. It seems to have worked.

An apple blossom coming out, I believe this is our one Duchess of Oldenburg tree, which is always the earliest.

Two year old Gold Rush trees.

Dad showing the growth.

 Another peach.

One of the Crimson Crisp baby trees, we're spreading the branches with nuts to get them to grow outward.

The orchard cat showing off.

Monday, April 8, 2013

A Few Pictures

Peach buds swelling

Copper turning the trees blue. Copper is used as a fungicide and is handy to prevent Fireblight. 

More blue trees, these are Asian pears, which are very susceptible to Fireblight. 

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Late Bloom

Because we're actually having a long winter for the first time in a couple of years, I think Backyard Orchards will not have fruit available until the middle of July, which, honestly, is a good thing. The later bloom happens, the better the chance it won't be frosted out. We're just starting to see green tip on the apples; Asian pears are at green tip; peaches are opening their blossoms. So hopefully we'll have an excellent year, and I expect that our winter season will extend into 2014.

In other news, today we're going to purchase 30 new peach trees from a fellow orchardist who planted too many. I don't know where we're going to put them, since just about every part of our five acre property is covered in trees. When full bloom finally hits, I'll have some spectacular pictures.

Saturday, March 16, 2013

New Apples

We're planting fifteen Winecrisp and fifteen Crimson Crisp apple trees this year. Each are newly developed varieties that ripen in the fall. Everything seems to have 'crisp' in the name now, I guess because of the success of Honeycrisp. Here are two pictures of the new apples. Keep in mind that it will be awhile before these trees mature and produce fruit.

Saturday, February 23, 2013

Plans for 2013

Backyard Orchard is considering selling during the week at our home residence in Rising Sun, Indiana, in addition to farmers' markets. Our home business has always been erratic, due to the fact that we visit so many markets and are unable to keep steady hours. I think that we've figured out what markets we want to do this year, and we'll be able to sell at home. Rising Sun is a beautiful scenic drive during the summer (the legions of motorcyclists certainly think so) and there's quite a bit to do in town or out on the river. When the season approaches, we'll display our hours.

We'll be getting into growing more vegetables this year, mostly tomatoes and peppers, and the time is coming when we'll have to start them in the greenhouse. I believe we'll have a good quantity of apple varieties that we haven't had for a few years, especially Enterprise apples. We've spent a lot of time pruning the overgrown trees and clearing out decayed limbs, leaves, and apples from underneath them, so the disease problems we've had in the past shouldn't be a factor this year. I'm hoping it'll be a good year for Mutsu, Golden Supreme, and Honeycrisp, all of which didn't produce much last year because of the late frost.

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

The Winter Blues

Backyard Orchard has been busy with winter work such as pruning and brush cleaning, and we're about done with both the former and the latter. Because of last year's light crop, the trees responded by growing a ton of water-sprouts. This year we should have a great bloom (trees bloom heavily after a drought) and so far we are having a normal winter, so hopefully bloom will happen on schedule and not a month early as it did last year.

We lost a few of our new peach and pear trees to deer damage, but the majority of what we planted last spring has survived. We're thinking of planting a new apple called Winecrisp, which has a Winesap-like coloring, but a sweeter taste. Has anyone tried it?

If you're looking for something to do, check out Adam's Apples, a fantastic blog that's reviewed hundreds of apple varieties.