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June 18, 2010

It is only my second day as a farmer and I have a real situation on my hands. Our farm is home to two big, pretty, and abundantly fertile peach trees. I believe they are two different species of peach because the fruit on each looks considerably different. The problem with being the farmer in charge of two uber fertile peach trees is that I, as of today, have no specific fruit preservation skills. Sometime in the next seven to twenty-one days Polly and Priscilla (I named them) will birth over 1,000 peaches. Think about this in your mind. Imagine being in the mood for a peach. Imagine going to the store to get a peach, maybe your splurge and get three. Imagine the bulk of those three peaches, their weight, the amount of space they take up, the narrow period during which they will be viable. Now multiple that by 500 and you’ve got a peach-mergency.

I tried to calm my initial panic with a little internet research. I am confident I can peel and pit a peach. I am also confident I can freeze peaches. Since freezing peaches makes them perfect for smoothies and cobblers, I am definitely pumped about peach freezing. Canning is a whole different ball game. You can kill someone with an improperly canned peach. Plus, canning requires equipment, namely cans, a big ol pot, special tongs to take the hot can out of the boiling pot, and …lids. Before Polly and Priscilla give birth I will need some can tutoring. Maybe there is some sort of support group out here I can join to learn about canning without the breeding of botulism.

In the mean time, enjoy these pics of the peaches, and a special shout out to Aunt Sheila–Geoff frolicking.

Priscilla the peach tree.

Peaches (call me Captain Obvious).

Geoff frolicking.

5 Comments leave one →
  1. Uncle Chris permalink
    June 18, 2010 10:14 PM

    How totally cool for y’all.

  2. Sheila McGuire permalink
    June 18, 2010 11:32 PM

    Farmers around here load up their pickup beds with fruit and find a spot by the side of the road. Put a cute bandana on Scooty and take him with you – you know us cityfolk can’t resist a good dog. I’ve bought my share of good cantaloupe, watermelon, peas, tomatoes that way; no peaches, but I haven’t run across a peach farmer with a cute dog. I appreciate the picture of Geoff; somehow I didn’t think riding a mower was what you call frolicking. I expected more along the lines of running with wild abandon. So if he ever decides to gambol through the field, grab the kodak.

  3. Vikki Walton permalink
    June 19, 2010 7:49 AM

    Contact your county agricultural extension ASAP! You wouldn’t believe how much help they’re willing to offer. Our county (Jefferson in WV) also has a homemaker extension that would call for “all hands on deck” to assist with your emergency. The peaches are beautiful. It would be a shame to waste even one!

  4. Chatty Chapman permalink
    June 20, 2010 7:14 PM

    Hopefully you’ve discover Ball’s website for canning. I’ve always followed their instructions and all has turned out well. See if this helps. If not, I guess I’ll just have to come up there.

  5. Tracy permalink
    June 21, 2010 6:09 AM

    Is that a Bad Boy lawnmower? Love it! We have one and it was the best investment in lawn equipment we have made by far!

    As for the peaches, canning is super duper easy! With an investment of maybe $150-$200, you can purchase a 23 qt pressure canner (I would suggest one with a pressure gauge, as it’s easier to monitor the pressure), and all of the supplies you need. If there’s a Wal-Mart nearby, you can get your jars, tongs, and other equipment for pretty cheap. The first time is always a little questionable, because you’re not sure if you’re doing it right, but, as long as the lids suck down and seal, you’re good to go. Last year was our first experience with canning, and I can’t wait to get started again. Once you get the hang of it, it’ll go quickly and easily. Look to the internet for tips, and you can never go wrong with a Ball canning and preserving book. They have tons of recipes and tips. You could also make peach jam…yummy! If you freeze, don’t forget your Fruit Fresh!

    Good luck!

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