- Recent retiree--35 year's experience teaching reading, English, adult basic education and volunteer leadership skills. Started this blog to exchange ideas and commentary with friends and others having an interest in joining the discussions. Greatest life accomplishments include: 1.organized my 3rd grade class to check out library books for me to get around librarian's weekly limit--Amazon.com, the Mullins Elementary 3rd Grade Class of 1956 is still waiting for "thank you" notes; 2. volunteered in the Peace Corps, island of St. Kitts, West Indies; 3.taught adults to read, earn their GEDs., and speak English as a second language; 4. bought a border collie puppy for $6, got evicted rather than give him up, and began a life-long love affair with all things "Dog"; 5. joined a physical fitness boot camp in my mid-50s--don't mess with someone who's been doing regulation pushups in wet grass at 5:30 a.m.; 6. walked across Northern England with best friend Sally--over 80 miles from the Irish to North Seas; and 7. travelled to many foreign countries for pleasure and work.
Monday, August 10, 2009
Fun Monday July 10 Topic--We're talkin' peaches here. Not that these red-golden orbs of deliciousness are growing in my garden, but I do know where the best ones are to be had within driving distance. Karmyn, our Fun Monday host this week from over at Dreaming What Ifs , wants to know what's growing in our garden. Well Karmyn, the quick answer on Summit Court is "nothing" unless you count lawn grass (entirely too much), some ornamental grass or a couple of huge hostas. So, I'll have to follow the proud Fun Monday tradition of stretching the rules in order to participate this week. We'll head south of Louisville on I-65 to Jackson's Orchard near Bowling Green where the best peaches in the state are ripe and ready to eat--about a two and a half hour roadtrip.
For the past two weeks my roadtrip partner Kittyhawk and I had been studying the peach ripening schedule on Jackson Orchard's website to time our trip for when the best peaches, in our opinion, would be ripe. We were looking for anything that had "haven" in the name--preferably Cresthaven. The "Havens" or any of the other redskin yellow freestone varieties are tops on our list. That's been the case for many years. Kittyhawk grew up in Bowling Green and I started making these peach roadtrips with her when we became friends and work partners over 30 years ago. We worked for the state department of education and always welcomed a chance to do some teacher in service training that brought us close to Jackson's Orchard in peach season. According to the '09 harvest schedule there are new varieties with promising names like Blushing Star, Redskin, or Contender. There's even some new white freestone options. Kittyhawk and I sampled some of the new varieties, but loaded up the trunk of her car with Cresthavens--enough for ourselves and sharing with friends and family.
Jackson's Orchard sets up on a high hill, the highest point in Warren County. The farm market is nestled in the middle of the orchards of apples and peaches, other fruits and vegetable gardens. The orchard/farm store is a part of Kentucky's agri-tourism initiative. These businesses specialize in fresh fruits and produce and, in addition, give city folk a taste of the country good life. Families can bring their children to the farm to pick their own fruits, go on hayrides, pet farm animals, or select their own pumpkins. The day we were at the orchard we were amused to find a large striped cat lounging in a cardboard box on the checkout counter. The box was labeled "cat box"! A big chocolate lab, Jake, lay in the aisle and cheerfully accepted petting from the customers. That is, if you didn't mind a little pond scum. When I spoke with Jake I believe he had just cooled off in the pond.
Gilding the Peach--as if these ripe, juicy fruits would need any help except a quick wash and peel, if you must. But in case you wanted to combine them with some freshly picked farm blueberries, butter, and sugar you could make a classic southern dessert in a few minutes--Blueberry Peach Cobbler. This recipe was on the checkout counter by the blueberries.
So, as we head into fall I hope you're enjoying the fruits and vegetables grown on your own land or bought from local farmers. While you're at it, start some traditions like a peach roadtrip. In a few hours on the road you can catch up with a friend and bring home some peaches like none you'll eat at any other time of the year.
Now keep Fun Monday going by sharing your gardening stories and checking out other Fun Monday participants.
(Photos of schedule, Jackson's Orchard, and cobbler recipe all are from their website. Click on images to embiggen.)