The Orchard in Winter

The winter garden does not include fruit but our work prepares 
for the delicious gems we will enjoy next spring and summer. 

The last tree ritual before we bid adieu to the fruit Harvest for 2011 
was to pick the Fuyu persimmons. 
This gorgeous fall fruit hung on into November, 
gleaming in the golden sunlight 
and beckoning us to take a bite from the tree.  
ESTATE's Chef Uriel couldn't resist 
and he was glad we had Fuyus rather than Hachiya persimmons, 
which are more tanic and not so tasty right from the tree. 
The day he and John gathered persimmonswhich became
persimmon jam at ESTATE 
(especially luscious as a dipping sauce with the zepoles), 
they picked 50 lbs of persimmons.
And the juju berries that John and Colby picked off the tree 
in early November clung to the branches in December 
but were past the point we can use them.

Now though there is much to be done in the Orchard, weeding and 
clearing beds, pruning and amending the soil.  
That is what occupies us along with our labors in the lower beds.  
John was delighted to discover how fertile the soil
in the Orchard was this year, 
so he is considering what to plant here for winter.
Matt and Ray from Local Landscapers  
Even though the trees will be dormant in winter, 
with such rich soil, our options for vegetables are expanded.
As we work in the Orchard amidst the bare branches 
we dream of fruit, like the Indian Blood Peaches that grew here.
 For now, though that is a few months away.
As we await the budding of the trees in Spring, 
perhaps there will be radishes or carrots in the orchard beds 

January chronicles will tell you what John decides to do here.

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