Fruit & News of the Week: August 7, 2017

Fruit of the Week:

O’Henry Peaches
Frog Hollow Farm, Brentwood, CA
Farmer Al’s favorite peach to grill, the O’Henry has the flavor,
size, and crimson blush that makes for a truly memorable
peach. It’s elegantly pointed shape slices to an attractive heart
shape for striking presentation.

Opal Peaches
Frog Hollow Farm, Brentwood, CA
Yellow-fleshed peaches are more popular in the United States,
but the allure of an excellent white-fleshed variety like the Opal
can’t be denied. Very low in acid, the Opal’s sweetness comes
across two-fold. A beautiful dessert peach, the Opal has a deli-
cate pink blush to its skin and mild flesh with a hint of vanilla.

Summer Fire Nectarines
Frog Hollow Farm, Brentwood, CA
The Summer Fire has a firm meaty flesh that isn’t as juicy as
some of our other varieties but is packed with a red wine inten-
sity that makes it a memorable and desirable nectarine. Often
with a deeper reddish hue than the Fantasia, the Summer Fire
is a variety that’s worth the extra effort it takes to slice and pit
a clingstone: its warm yellow flesh is streaked beautifully with
red near the pit.

Flavor King Pluots
Frog Hollow Farm, Brentwood, CA
A dark-skinned pluot with red flesh, it has an intense rich flavor
combined with sweet, spicy tones that are reminiscent of the
Santa Rosa. A nice acid bite and firm texture that softens beau-
tifully as the fruit continues to ripen, the Flavor King is amazing
out of hand and equally good for baking.

Crimson Royale Pluots
Frog Hollow Farm, Brentwood, CA
With an elongated shape similar to an apricot, the Crimson
Royal has a tangy red skin which contrasts deliciously with the
sweet orange flesh within.
…all varieties are subject to change…

A Note from Sarah:

What on EARTH is happening with the weather?!?! Today is
muggy and hot. This morning at 6am, when I got up, it was 77
degrees. What?!? Not our typical Northern CA summer weather.
I got reports this morning of thunder and lightning last night
and light showers. WHAT?!?! In August? In Brentwood? No
Bueno.
We have had multiple days in a row of over 100 degree heat
this week alone. This scenario has repeated itself multiple times
over the summer. In a “normal” year we have one, maybe two,
multiple days of triple digit heat and they are spread apart. This
year it has been day after day, week after week with little break.
What this translates to for us is the trees are stressed. When
it’s over 95 degrees they shut down. They slow the flow of sap
which brings vital nutrients to the ripening fruit. This process
has been slowed and in some cases stopped. That’s bad for us
we have the phone ringing off the hook with orders. We don’t
have any ripe fruit!
The other serious impact this heat has is to our crews. Heat
Illness is a VERY real, very dangerous situation for the crew
members who are working in this triple digit heat. We have
to get what ripe fruit there is off the trees or we will loose it.
Which we can not afford to do. When it’s 105 in the shade
it’s really difficult to motivate our guys to pick the fruit. They
are hot and tired. Heat like this is exhausting. We’ve taken to
buying powdered Gatorade for the kitchen crew to make at
noon every day for anyone who wants it. We only make it in
the afternoon because we need the guys to drink water (and
lots of it) first. The Gatorade is to help with the electrolytes and
help prevent dehydration. We have the best crew anyone could
ask for. They show up everyday, knowing it’s going to be well
into the 100’s and sing and laugh as they pick the fruit you’re
all getting to enjoy on your tables. I can’t begin to give enough
kudos to these guys. Without them and their tireless good
humor and energy, we’d be lost.
The next time you sink your teeth into one of our peaches,
nectarines or pluots, give a shout out to the guys who picked
them for you in triple digit heat. Then be thankful for air
conditioning!

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