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My Thoughts on ‘Mara des Bois’ Strawberries

August 31st, 2017

If you remember, this spring I decided to try ‘Mara des Bois’ strawberries as my overbearing variety. I’ve tried a few other everbearing or day neutral berries, but have never been super enthusiastic about the flavor. I kept hearing about this variety and how delicious it was, so I ordered 25 plants from Nourse Farms. They were carefully planted this spring, watered regularly, and started producing about 10-12 weeks later.

They’ve been producing ever since. If I remember to give them a watering with liquid kelp every 2 weeks they product big, beautiful berries. If I forget the berries are much smaller. It makes sense that they need extra feed to produce fruit continuously. Out of my 25 plants, 24 survived and they’re producing all kinds of runners now (which I should cut off to keep them producing berries). As far as the flavor is concerned, they are OK. To me, they don’t taste quite like the strawberries I like, they taste similar to the small yellow berries I grow. I think they have a slight taste of pineapple. Currently, we are debating whether dedicating garden space to them is worth it or if we’d rather dedicate that space to a different fruit (like raspberries).

Have you ever grow day neutral strawberries? Do you have a favorite variety?

Freezing Avocados

January 28th, 2015

A few weeks ago I ordered another box of avocados from Freckleman Farm. It’s a small farm, they only have 16 avocado trees. The variety is ‘Fuerte’ and they’re FANTASTIC!!!!!
Freezing Avocados 1
I was really amazed at the quality of fruit. They were perfectly ripe and flavorful about 5 days after I received my box. They stayed fresh in my cool pantry for a week and a half. After eating them fresh on salads for the past 10 days, I decided it was time to freeze the rest of them so they wouldn’t go bad.
Freezing Avocados 2
So I whipped them up with lime zest and juice (1/2 lime per avocado). Into small jars they went and I’ll enjoy the guacamole when I during the seasons when I can’t get fresh avocados.
Freezing Avocados 3
I’m ordering another big box of these avocados because they’re so good. It’s difficult to find good avocados at the local stores around here, it seems they’re always bruised up and they go bad so quickly. It’s so nice to live in a time when you can order directly from small farms and get great produce!

Do you like avocados? What’s your favorite way to eat them?

Baking Up Some Winter Comfort

February 3rd, 2010

pan⋅dow⋅dy (noun) – sliced fruit baked with sugar and spices in a deep dish, with a thick top crust.

A couple weeks ago I got Rustic Fruit Desserts: Crumbles, Buckles, Cobblers, Pandowdies, and More from the library. It’s such a great little book, all the recipes sound wonderful! I’m a big fan of desserts that contain fruit, so this cookbook is right up my alley.

Since my freezer is filled with blueberries, blackberries and wild black raspberries, we really enjoy baking them into lovely cobblers in the winter for light dinners or afternoon snacks. A cup of coffee and a serving of gingered apple and cranberry pandowdy* is all you need on a cold winter evening. I’ll definitely be baking more wonderful things from this cookbook! I have some black raspberries that are begging to be baked into something wonderful.

What’s your favorite kind of dessert: tangy fruit, rich chocolate, sugary sweet…?

*The actual recipe in the cookbook is for gingered pear and raspberry pandowdy, but I had some apples and cranberries that were begging to be used up.

Picking Pears

September 7th, 2009

We picked pears at my mom’s house again last week. We didn’t get as many as we did last year (remember that?). There were a lot of pears on the ground, but we still had a good haul.
pears_in_basket
I gave some to my sister and we brought the rest home. Last year I canned pear halves, but that’s a lot of work. Since we still have some left, I’ll stick to easier preservation methods like: making pear sauce (like applesauce), pear butter and drying.

What’s your favorite way to preserve pears?

New Cherry Tree

June 24th, 2008

A while ago we decided to add a few fruit trees to our gardens. After much deliberation, we finally ordered a Montmorency Cherry Tree from the National Arbor Day Foundation. It’s scarcely 18 inches tall, but it has already grown 6 inches since we received it. It arrived a month ago while I was busy putting in and planting raised beds, so I planted it a large pot. Yesterday I finally got around to putting in it’s final place in the front flowerbed. I had to move a large catmint plant (was supposed to be a Walker’s Low, but it turned out to be a regular catmint). It looks tiny between the other 2 catmints but soon enough it will be tall and provide some shade for some lovely lady’s mantle underneath it. I can’t wait for the cherry pies!

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About

This is a daily journal of my efforts to cultivate a more simple life, through local eating, gardening and so many other things. We used to live in a small suburban neighborhood Ohio but moved to 153 acres in Liberty, Maine in 2012.

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