I’ve been away for 6 days helping family as they renovate a house in preparation to move. Being there has allowed the adults to work after their day jobs and on weekends without having to worry about the young teen. I was able to be with him on a day off from school, pick him up on two other days as the bus from this school doesn’t run to his current home, and get him to school this morning. It allowed me to help with daily household chores such as laundry and preparing dinner so they could work longer without having to get home to him.
I also filled boxes. They are true bibliophiles and music lovers. Books were packed and boxes and bookcases moved. Extra linens packed and moved. The kitchen and big furniture will have to be moved once the renovation is complete enough to allow them to function in the house, but they are getting closer.
This was my second trip to help out since they purchased the house just as school began and I know that they are grateful as they repeatedly let me know. On this trip, I was talking about trying to pick the apples when I got home, that the deer had not already pulled down and eaten, being fruit that was all over my reach. The Asian pears also heavy with fruit that the birds were damaging and fruit was beginning to fall. The deer don’t seem to want the pears. Generally I pull the tractor near the trees, stand on the seat and grab what I can. They asked me why I didn’t have a fruit picker tool, I didn’t even know they existed. They showed up on Sunday with a brand new extension pole fruit picking basket for me as a gift.
After arrived home today, getting unpacked, and laundry started, I took my new tool out to try.
What a genius idea. Though some of the fruit is bird damaged, there are plenty of apples to make applesauce, and plenty of pears to make Pear and Orange marmalade, my favorite.
The 8 gallon bucket was half filled with the remaining apples and filled to the top with pears. There are many more pears out there, most very small or bird damaged, but I harvested more than enough to can. We generally have a later frost that kills the early fruit blooms and the later blooms produce enough fruit for our use and the fruit gets larger because it isn’t crowded. We did not have that frost this year and one of the two Asian pears had so much fruit that it broke several branches and mostly the fruit is small. If there isn’t a later frost next year, I know I must thin the pears and once it gets cold, I must prune the damaged branches.
I love my gift. I was safely able to get a harvest and the rest of the week is supposed to be a bit cooler, so I will can applesauce and jam.