Fruit & News of the Week: June 19 2017

This Week’s Fruit:

Santa Rosa Plums
Frog Hollow Farm, Brentwood, CA
Santa Rose plums are famous for their beautiful dark skin, yellow flesh and are delicious eaten fresh or canned. This variety was developed by Luther Burbank in, you guessed it, Santa Rosa so they are very well adapted for northern California.

Emeraude Nectarines
Frog Hollow Farm, Brentwood, CA
Emeraude nectarines are known for their crisp texture, white flesh and sweet flavor.

Flavor Crest Peaches
Frog Hollow Farm, Brentwood, CA
Flavor Crest are a yellow fleshed freestone peach with good flavor, firm texture and lovely red color.

June Glo Nectarines
Frog Hollow Farm, Brentwood, CA
An early season, yellow fleshed nectarine that is semi-freestone and full of flavor, by plant renowned plant breeder Flyod Zaiger.

Goldensweet Apricots
Frog Hollow Farm, Brentwood, CA
At long last our Goldensweets have arrived. They are a smaller apricot that makes up for whatever it lacks in size with its rich flavor. Though we may bake pastries featuring other varieties, the Goldensweet is our variety of choice for our best-selling apricot conserve. Another California born and bred variety, it has a brilliant golden orange skin with a soft blush.

…All varieties are subject to change..

 

A Note from Farmer A:

Dear CSA Members,

On the tours I often give of the farm, probably the most frequently asked questions are about how we control bugs. I love that question, because the answers are so dramatic, at least to me, on a biological level, and so incredible; unbelievable even.
The thing is, everything has to eat something else to live, reproduce, and survive as a species. Some would use the expression: “It’s a dog eat dog world out there…” or just say that its survival of the bittest.” But actually, it’s just the natural order of nature…everything has to eat. One of these dramas is with aphids. Aphids are vegetarians, and they like to eat (or suck on) the leaves of certain trees. They love our Dapple Dandy pluot leaves and every year about this time, theyinfest the Dapple Dandy leaves, which then curl up tightly into gnarly, crinkled, sticky, nasty lookingballs, shocking to see! This year, our entomologist Gregg Young said that it would be best to prune off the infested shoots, letting them fall to the ground where the aphids would just die of hunger (since there’d be no more sap to suck on!)

Then, he took some amazing magnified pictures of the life cycles unfolding on a single leaf. There were live aphids and dead aphids, called mummies. There were syrphid fly larvae, which eat aphids and there were parasitized aphids (tiny wasp females lay their eggs in the aphids; the eggs hatch and the wasp larvae eat it from the inside out…you could see the exit hole in the photo!) All of this was happening on a single leaf

So getting back to that frequently asked question…often we do very little or nothing to control bugs. The natural food chain of life usually takes care of it for us.

Regards,
Farmer Al

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