It has not been a great season to be a fruit farmer. We had frost during blossom that all but wiped out our cherries and saskatoons (the blossoms are what turn into the fruit). We then had 4 hailstorms, including golf ball sized hail that broke windows and damaged the little fruit we had. We opened for raspberries last Tuesday but we have already been picked out and are currently waiting for more fruit to ripen. I know that many of you have been disappointed to not be able to get the fruit you want. Weekends should be busy for us, but we cannot open this weekend with no fruit to pick.
We have made the following decision. We will open on Tuesday July 26 for picking. If there is enough fruit we will remain open on Wednesday July 27. After that we will be closing early this season. We simply do not have enough fruit this year to warrant remaining open. We apologize for any inconvenience. If you give us a call, email, or Facebook message letting me know what fruit you are looking for we would be happy to refer you to a nearby farm that has that fruit. We have many wonderful colleagues and while some have also lost their entire crop this season, some have not and we can let you know where to go. We do have some frozen saskatoons of good quality from last season. We also have some pies, syrups and jams, so if you want to drop by for any of those between now and closing day next Tues or Wed let us know.
Farming is not easy. However, there are upsides to this difficult season:
- The plants putting little energy into fruit production this season means they are growing like mad. So barring strange weather again, there should be a bumper crop next season.
- We have off-farm jobs. We still have a good income and we are blessed for that.
- We are going to have an entire month to spend with our young children. We have never had that with U-pick often ending just before back to school.
- We believe that growing food is important. We believe it is important that we feed our own population as much as possible. A bad crop year does not change that belief, simply reminds us that diversity in farming is important.
Thank you for your patronage. We do not take it for granted and we hope you will remember us next season.