We're expecting a generous harvest of fruit as all our trees come into bearing. Perhaps as many as 1200 bushels a year. Which, as we sing in the traditional wassail song, will literally be a barn floor full.
Forecast for 2020: This year's crop will be more like 120 bushels, and only then if rains come to size the later varieties. Most early varieties have a dozen apples at best. Yet this suits the pace of the cider club coming together and being able to make value-added products once again. A community orchard effort requires patience. We're gaining. More people care about chemical-free food. And the trees are surely happy about that!
|We are open on Friday-Saturday-Sunday, 10 AM through 4 PM, for fresh apples sales in the months of September and October. Opening day is Friday, September 25.|
|We are not a pick-your-own orchard but rather make tree-ripened fruit available for sale when varieties come ready.|
|You find out about the apple selection each week and other orchard news by signing up for our newsletter:|
|We grow healthy apples by working with nutrition and biology. Learn more about what it means to be beyond organic below.|
|Select apple pricing varies with size bag. We can accept cash or personal checks.|
|If you’re seeking bushel quantities of apples, please email ahead to confirm availability.|
|Information about shipping apples later in the season can be found in our Marketplace.|
We hope you visit the farm for the full selection of our apples. You'll also be able to find especially popular varieties every day of the week in fall at these local food hubs:
North Country Marketplace in Colebrook
Root Seller Marketplace in Lancaster
Littleton outlet? St. Johnsbury outlet?
Trees grow relatively slow in this North Country of ours. The hillside orchard here in Lost Nation consists of 140 or so trees, mostly planted on MM.111 rootstock. These trees are contributing to our harvest in a substantial way now, joining with the seedling trees planted in the early 90s. Another block of approximately 120 trees consists of Bud.118 and a range of vigorous dwarf varieties in the 40% size class, so fruit will start sooner rather than later. Our newest block lies across the stream and adds 80 more trees to the count, including classic bittersweets and bittersharps for fine cider.
Creating a diverse ecosystem is integral to growing healthy fruit. The understory of our 'apple forest' consists of many different herbs, nitrogen-fixing plants, and wild flowers. This in turn supports many species of bees and beneficial wasps and spiders. Each apple tree ties into a vast support network of mycorrhizal fungi that forms a 'common root being' between every plant in the orchard. This web of life delivers a balanced array of nutrients to enhance photosynthesis which is why Lost Nation apples taste so darn good.
Growing 'organic' has always been a given. Understanding how Nature does health fascinates me to no end. Working with biology and nutrition produces flavorful apples that are good for us. Compare that to the visually-pleasing orbs produced by toxic chemistry. That I choose not to certify our farm as organic with the USDA makes for good discussion over a glass of cider. Check out my network grower profile to better understand what a holistic orchardist does to bless up this earth.
Have a peek at this video clip of Michael summarizing his approach to growing healthy fruit.