Checking The Buds.....

March 4, 2011

Yesterday we attended the funeral of a beloved member of our communities,
Louise Whetten.
Her death was unexpected and she will be greatly missed. Her service was filled with stories
of how she loved and served those around her....always. Her family is lovely and
are a tribute to what a great Mother and grandmother she was, and what a good life she led. They have alot to live up to. I personally will miss the
special kindness and love that she showed me everytime I saw her.
I am grateful that I was blessed to know her.
On our way home....The Farmer and I decided to stop at one of the farms to check on the trees.
The extreem cold spell that passed through here a few weeks, has already effected the
fruit crop this year. The trees had not yet blossomed, but damage was still done.
Some have estimated that nearly 50% of the crops in this area have been lost. It is still hard to tell. The trees we checked were full of bud, that will turn into flowers, that will turn into peaches. The Farmer was in the process of pruning the orchards when the extreem temperatures hit, and he very quickly stopped, thinking that some fruit might be save. It was a good thing he did!
We drove up and down the rows, hoping to catch a glimpse into our
peach this looks, hopeful!
p.s. - The Farmer doesn't usually check the orchard wearing a suit.....
In order to check a peach need to carefully cut into the bud to see if the center is green or black. Black would mean that it is would mean....Horray!....peaches are on the way! He found many green buds....he had not planned on many....but is now alot more
hopeful for a crop. The orchards have been prepared for the cold nights to come....the temperatures are managed with sprinker systems. Years ago, the orchards were kept warm with what we call smudge buckets...or buckets full of diesel which is lit on fire. It was not a very effective way of warming the orchards and also it was very expensive, but it was all
we had. Now the sprinklers do the work.....and they do a pretty good job! Some nights,
that are extra cold, people have been known to burn basically anything to keep the trees warm.
The Farmer....checking the small buds....
Some of the trees are actually begining to bloom. Little pink flowers are begining to appear.
Soon our area will be covered in pink! The cottonwood trees have a hint of green which
means they are begining to awake as well. The tree I always my yard is the
willow tree....when it begins to bud....and have a hit of is typically smudging season....
and last night I checked the willow trees....and they are very close to budding.

The coldest parts of the orchard are lined with bails of straw....that if needed in an emergency...
will be lit on fire. The orchards are also surrounded with a "water wall" made from hanging
sprinklers that actually make a "curtain" of water which blocks the cold.

Currently The Farmer is cleaning out a well....he thought it would be a fairly simple
process...that was until.....

The guy working on the well....dropped the drilling bit....down the hole....
not so simple anymore....Poor Farmer....another thing to worry about!
Here's to another year of farming....hoping and praying that all will go well!
** I just finished editing my second "blog book".....It was a huge job!
I am using another company this year....I am very excited to see the results.

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