Wednesday, July 26, 2017

Peaches, From My Very Own Tree

This is my peach tree.
Yes, that's right. The thing hanging over the wall.
Astute observers will notice that it has a problem. It's growing horizontally instead of vertically. Clearly it doesn't have long for this world, but I'm hanging on to it to get my one and only peach harvest from it. I planted it 2 years ago. Last year there was a late frost that killed all the buds. This year it came back with a vengeance, so much so that the weight of the peaches pulled the tree over, breaking the root base and basically endangering passers-by. But there are peaches on it! About a half-bushel's worth and, today, I made my first batch of jam with them.

There is netting over the tree to keep out the birds, but it doesn't keep out the chipmunks, who eat half a peach and then run away. I pick what I can that are just starting to yield a bit to pressure and let them ripen in a bag on the counter. So far, I've gotten about 4 pounds.

Today's jam was inspired by the beautiful blackberries in yesterday's farm share. I decided to make a Blackberry Peach Jam:  1 pint of blackberries, 3 cups chopped peaches, 2 T. lemon juice, 1 box powdered pectin, and 6.5 cups of sugar. The blackberries were crushed as they cooked a bit. This made 8.5 pints of jam. I might enter some in the fair. Or not. One pint will go to my friend with whom I'm splitting the share, since she didn't get any blackberries this week because she was out of town.

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