Remember all those stories and photos last summer, and the summer before, too, about the peaches, plums, and nectarines I was getting through our Community Supported Agriculture farm? The beginnings of this year’s fruit is on the trees in the form of blossoms, and there is a 62-mile trail, marked well with signs, that will take you on a trip through all those orchards that give the world the most of its stone fruit. The San Joaquin Valley is California’s top agricultural producing region with the fruit and nut crops bringing in over $2 billion. It is at the heart of our economy.
Usually I travel this trail with my girlfriends, but that was not going to happen this year. One of them has died, another has an elderly husband who is not well, a few more have interests that are taking them elsewhere, and one is working two jobs to keep a roof over her head. So, for the first time ever, Terry accompanied me on this trip. He even drove.
That was nice since I am usually the one to drive this trail. However, I was then at his mercy as to where we stopped. After a few misattempts, Terry figured out how to get off the road without getting into a farmer’s way.
The trees are at their peak right now:
The sun was shining. There was virtually no wind. The temperatures were in the low 70s. What I would call a Goldilock’s day–Just Right.
We stopped for lunch in the small town of Reedley, at Mainstreet Cafe, and then walked around downtown before getting back in the car to finish the trip.
Terry took lots of photos:
A few days after our trip, the winds and rains blew in which would cause blossom drop, but we saw very little on our excursion through the orchards.
Knowing the rains were a possibility, and attempting to keep the chance of brown rot to a low level, we did see signs where fungicides had been applied:
We saw many cherry orchards that were not yet blooming and are thinking we would really like to do a return trip when those trees are in full bloom. I’m just not too sure when the cherries bloom, though.
A few more pictures: