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Saturday, April 21, 2012

Apple Trees in Bloom and Orchard Project

Zestar apple blossoms
It's an early bloom for our orchard; at least two weeks early! We did have minor frost damage to some petals but the interiors of the flowers, where the fruit lies, appear to have been left mostly intact. The honey bees have not been frequenting the orchard yet due to the cold and blustery weather. The wind may be helping to pollinate the flowers but ultimately, we need the honey bees!

Our Oake Lake Orchard Project for MN Food Shelves was a huge success last year! If you recall, as I was in the midst of pruning nearly 100 of our 127 apples trees last year, it hit me that we would be just too busy to run the orchard ourselves and needed to find a solution. A solution soon came and we teamed up with a friend. Bill Hughes would take over the project manager title of the orchard and enlist volunteers to help pick the apples then transport them to out state food shelves. With their help, we were able to donate over $8,000 in Honey Crisp, Sweet 16, Victory, Witos, and Zestar apples! Thank you, Bill and thank you to all of those who volunteered their time to make this happen.

So far, there are more blossoms on the trees this year so I think we may be in for an even bigger year for our project. Let the 2012 apple season begin!

I will miss our beautiful spot here on Oake Lake with our little apple orchard when we move to Minnesota's northwoods and hope that whomever buys our hobby farm enjoys it as much as we have. Yes! It IS for sale. Please watch this blog and facebook for updates as it will soon have a facebook page of its own.