Monday, October 10, 2011
Orchard Memories 1986
The whole apple production process was great for kids and visitors who only got a glimpse of the incredible work it took to take care of 2000 apple trees that produced giant, crisp apples. Selling season was very quick in October. Boxes of apples flew off the hill into the hands of waiting customers. In the beginning both farmers Susan and Tom worked outside jobs to help support the fledgling business. The work was hard and wearing but they loved it. They loved seeing the fruits of their labors! The unusual varieties of apples attracted the attention of scientists and media and they had more than one story done on their operation.
Making apple cider was an October celebration. The honey from the bee hives was delicious. Tractor rides for the kids was a regular feature, and 25 years later, new grandsons get the privilege. The orchard is gone, pulled down by the problem of apple maggots, and the trees rotted in piles and are now only a memory, and part of the earth. A pretty pasture and vegetable garden anchor the hillside. Two weddings were conducted there. Little kids still run through the property which farmer Tom has rigged with places for pushing toy dump trucks through dirt pathways, a fort in a wagon with a pulley and basket, a swing on a stage that has held musicians and diners. The farmer couple like to sit on their wide front porch, in a house constructed so many years ago by their nephews, and watch the vines creep up one tree and across to the others, making a quiet, secluded place for contemplating life and its surprises.