Upper Midwest Growers

This is only year 2 on the vines and I don’t have enough production to make a serious product. I just stemmed them and froze them in vacuum sealed bags to process later. I’ll try to get a reading when I use them in a few weeks.

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Please do so for both your grapes. I am curious too.

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Picked chamboucin and started to make wine. Possums come every night for the grapes. Good thing is they leave my pears along so far.

Must on second day

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are possum hard to catch/trap? I like wildlife, UNTIL it starts eating my food, then its time to go…

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It’s illegal to catch wild animals on your own. In Illinois, I have to pay licensed professionals to come to set up traps

oh jeezus,you cant even shoot them? Its hard to image some of the wacky laws they come up with in liberal states, didnt cross my mind you couldnt do something about it yourself.


yeah,robber Peter to pay Paul. Anything requires licenses aren’t cheap. Unfortunately, there are lot more people need to feed in Chicagoland. Got create some laws that let average, mid class people pay for the services, create job opportunities for certain group of people.


pellet guns are quiet and cheap. :wink: dont have to kill them just hurt them enough so they dont return.


Last piece of stonefruit. I wanted to think these were flavor king and maybe they are, but they don’t quite taste how i remember them–these have a nice texture, very sweet–but taste more like dapple dandy–who knows–it is a seedling tree.

The squirrels in my neighborhood need to be culled. So many of those things. I saw one in the garage the other day snooping around…probably looking for a winter vacation home.


About 4 gallons of Liberty, Wakapala, Kazak (MN 80-15-30), a few mixed crabs and a couple Golden Russets. I’ll pick another few gallons of Golden Russets next week, as well as a few gallons of Jonsib crab. I’d guess I’ve got around 3 gallons of Smitty’s Seedling, Chestnut crab, and Zestar in the fridge already. I’ll probably add some Golden Spice pears to the mix too.
Next week will be first attempt at making sweet cider. I’m guessing I’ll end up with around 3 gallons, but that’s just a guess at this point.


I was in the woods doing some work and stopped to grab a couple Bermedge fruit. This is a wild apple that was here when I bought the place in 2012. The cattle that had been pastured here had kept the tree browsed down to maybe 3’ high. I pruned it to a single leader, caged it, and hoped for the best. I think the first crop was 3 years ago. The fruit are fully ripe, fairly crisp, and sweeter than tart. The flesh has some red tinges, really kind of a pretty little apple. I gave my wife a slice and she said “oh, very sweet”. I’d guess in another week or so, they’ll be a bit soft/mealy. This is a tree grown mainly for wildlife, but in the future I’ll probably add some to my cider mix.

A pic of the tree


Picked all remaining Dripping’ n Honey today. The largest is 643 grams, almost 1 and 1/2 lb! I didn’t know Dripping Honey can grow this big. About half of pears are
around 400 grams, many more than 1 lb. It is a very good year for this pear.


Just curious as to whether or not you do anything to deter wasps. I’m getting destroyed by them at the moment. They are mainly targeting my Frostbite and I’m not sure what will be left when they are done.

I don’t do anything, but probably would if there was something I could do easily. The yellow jackets here are always fierce in September. Any open wounds on an apple quickly turn into yellow jacket attractants.

I have seen people make wasp/yellow jacket traps. It may be worth looking into.

Lots of commercial options out there, as well as homemade solutions
Yellow Jacket Trap: Easy DIY Wasp Trap - Carolina Honeybees

Roadedge apple. This is another wild apple that grows here. All I did was prune/train it a bit and protect it from the critters. They shouldn’t be ripe for another few weeks, but they are. They are sweeter than tart, juicy, and crisp. I’ve eaten far worse grocery store apples.
My pic

My wife’s pic

I guess we know who has more skills with a camera


Has anyone tried drippin honey pear in zone 4? Id be interested in giving it a shot if I could get some scion material in late winter…

I have 2 golden russet apples I get to sample this year and am hoping to pick them on time. I was thinking they wouldn’t be ready until early October. Are yours always ready this early? Maybe I should try one in a week.

No, this is at least 3 weeks early.

I picked most of the rest of my Golden Russets today. Some are too high for my extendable picker and I didn’t have a ladder along with me. The critters get to eat the rest of them.

The seeds are all brown for sure, but from eating a few they will definitely benefit from a few weeks of cold storage. I look forward to eating some in a month or so.

They were horrible here this year. Worst i’ve ever seen them. I could never locate a nest. I think it would probably be a good idea to try to wipe them out early in the summer. They are beneficial but once they start to target fruit, its game over. One flew up my shorts and stung me on the leg when i was working on a ladder–i was hitting my leg with a hammer :hammer: