What is going on today 2017?


Ugh, its so confusing. I searched this forum for an answer and came across this article from Oregon State, which says,
"Once commercial pears are picked, growers cool them down to about 30 degrees F. They don’t freeze at this temperature, because the fruit sugar acts like an antifreeze.

“The colder the pears are, the longer they’ll stay in good condition,” said Sugar. “In fact, they actually need to be cooled in order to ripen properly.”

Bartlett pears need to be cooled only for a day or two, and winter pears such as Anjou, Bosc and Comice require 2 to 6 weeks for optimal effect, he said.

I’ll pull them out and see what happens, thanks for you input.


That’s absolutely right Jim. I can see where the confusion is. The problem is that most home freezers are much colder than 30F. Our freezer in the kitchen is about 0F. Our deep freeze runs about 20 below. Just about any freezer, even at a very warm setting will easily freeze pears.


That’s my stupid mistake then. Any recommendations for frozen pears?


Hurricane forming in Gulf of Mexico…starting to look impressive on visible. Goes 16 has a nice view of it.

Euro actually has it making landfall in Texas, moving back out into the gulf and landfalling again in LA…


Pear butter with cinnamon and a dash of nutmeg. Start with 1/4 c. of sugar and add more to taste. Cook the pears down until most of the water is gone and add the cinnamon and nutmeg to taste.


Thanks Levers

Sadly I threw them out. They were a gross brown mush. Lesson learned. I was able to go back to the tree and grab a few more, so onward and upward.

How is the cider making going?


We have been doing a lot of work outside since the weather is so nice. My wife was weed-eating this evening, and asked me about some berries on a bush/tree that’s growing in the back yard. They look to be about a quarter inch diameter, reddish-orange with lighter little spots on them.

We had the bush cut down to the ground by a relative a couple years ago, and it’s like about 7ft tall now with lots of branches that have sprung from the stump.

Here are some pics.


Thanks for the suggestion. Go ahead and post a pic or link to it if you don’t mind. I ended up getting a Bosch scanner.


that would be a autumn olive. berries are good but considered invasive down your way. i planted 4 in the yard. heard that once established they’re near impossible to get rid off. makes good fruit leather.


Thanks, I believe you are correct, sir. I just looked it up. The berries have the specks on it just like in the pics.

Yes, like I said, it got cut to the ground by a chainsaw, and after two years, it’s growing like nothing happened. Wish my new peach trees grew like that!

I’ll try some of the berries soon. I know I can just look it up, but what is ‘fruit leather’?


We had some of the first ears of our Honey Select corn today. Very tasty, when compared to our Iochief, that is also ripening now. The HS is sweet, as advertised, and has a good corn flavor. The Iochief, very meh, maybe it’s a bit past peak.

Looks like we’ll have to pick the majority of the HS this weekend. The Silver Queen is not ready yet.


My cider making is is on pause for now. We are hoping to have a cider-making party in a month. I got some apples from a colleague but like all gift horses, they come with their problems. He wanted them off the tree and not in the yard, and I think we picked them too early. Since I’m still no where near a full crop (4th leaf trees) I plan to try to buy some or get apples around town. There are several produce auctions in the area and I may go to them to get more fruit. We will see.


crush the berries. pour into strips onto wax paper and dry in dehydrator or in hot sun. very good and good for you. i do it with my goumi also. store it in between wax paper in a ziplock in the fridge or freezer. my neighbors kids love it!


What about the guy east of you with all the varieties, he advertises he opens in Aug.


Wilson’s have their own cidery now, so I suspect between their fresh cider, hard cider, and pies (et cetera) their seconds are all spoken for. Otherwise at $2.50/lb for U-pick the price is too rich for me, though I think they do have a volume discount.

We have a (or is it two?) produce auction(s) close in Kalona in the Amish community there. I know a guy who sells sweet corn and strawberries there, so will have to ask him what the deal is.


Squirrels got into the butternut squash so I put a net over it - have to see if that deters them - some years it hasn’t

And there are all the zucchini, squirrels are welcome to them, but NOOOOO, they have to get into the butternuts

Damn squirrels


The garden has been keeping me busy! Some things winding down, others picking up. The daily harvest today was good!


Wow! Nice harvest Drew. Lots of antioxidant.



Really nice Drew, yum!!


I’m envious of those grapes. Well done sir.