Sunday, August 23, 2009

Fast Fruit

Lena and I went up to Foxbriar today to work in the garden. Lena picked three watermelons from her wild watermelon plants. They are still blooming like mad and threatening to take over the strawberry patch, again.
There is a muscadine grape outside the garden. Currently it grows up a tree, but we want to move it to the kitchen gazebo this fall. It is loaded with fruit this year. Today, there were 3 purple grapes on the vines. Muscadines grow singly, not in bunches. I picked them. They were still pucker-up tart.
I hope the rest are ripe and still there next weekend when I get back up to the garden.
That's been a problem all summer. The cherry trees were full of fruit this spring. It was almost ripe one weekend, and gone the next. Last year we picked cherries for weeks.
The blueberries were the same story, though we knew they were a bit scarce this year. The bushes had fruit, but not a lot. Last year we frozen 15 lbs of berries, sold several gallons and ate them to our heart's content. This year, we ate a pint - and then they were all gone.
We picked black berries two weekends, before there were none to be found. Last summer my arms were scarred well into August from the brambles.
I've been waiting all summer for the fabulous white peaches at the Ozark Folk Center. Every couple days, I'd go by and give them a gentle squeeze to see if they were ripe. They were rock hard when they started rotting at the stem end and falling off the trees. The potter's said they got a few good ones, but I didn't even get one.
The turkey brown figs all ripened quickly and are done. Now we're waiting on the big juicy Texas reds.
The weather this summer has been cool, with regular rains. It has been great for the humans, we feel very blessed, but we've had to be fast to catch the fruit.

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