Why do we grow trees?
We grow trees because we think there are so many interesting and useful varieties of fruit that are being left behind and getting lost, as nurseries concentrate mostly on growing trees that will provide ‘supermarket style’ fruit. We also grow trees because we think that in the future our people are going to need to grow as much of their food as close to home as possible.
What do we do with all that fruit?
Do we grow all of the trees ourselves that are listed in the catalogue – the answer is, nearly all of them. That means that we have a steady flow of fruit, nuts and berries coming into the house through the whole year.
During summer time we end up cutting up a lot of fruit into halves, and laying it out in the sun to dry – this seems to be one of the best ways of making sense of living in a place with so much sun, and so much fruit! We have some pretty good results with dried apples, dried pears, dried peaches, apricots, nectarines, cherries.
We also get round to bottling apples, peaches, plums, pears, cherries, and apricots. Apple pies are a bit of a favourite, along with pear tarts, stewed plums and cream, cherry cobbler, apricot crumble, cherries in brandy, quince paste, plum sauce, apple sauce, apricot jam.
We grind up almonds to make our own almond meal flour for cakes and tortes. And then we put macadamias, walnuts, almonds and all that dried fruit into homemade muesli.
A Small Mixed Farm
We like the idea of a small mixed farm, where the various parts of the farm interact with and support one another in a mutually beneficial way. When we are not working in the nursery, we raise a few free range pigs, (a good way of cleaning up fallen fruit that we dont get around to picking). We grow a small crop of biodynamic garlic, (also good for the pigs). We make compost, occasionally raise beef, look after some beehives, keep a flock of chooks, grow a big vegetable garden….regular old fashioned hippies really.
Yalca Fruit Trees Book Review
One of the most useful and thought provoking books I have read on orcharding is ‘The Holistic Orchard’ by Michael Phillips. The book is probably one of the most thoughtful and up to date discussions of any sort of orchard establishment and ongoing maintenance. The book covers everything from setting up, to pest management, pruning, harvest, marketing…. You are sure to find some thought provoking reading amongst its pages.
We hope you enjoy the new online shop and hope you can find something there to your taste. Happy gardening, and may the Spring rains be favourable to you this season.
Campbell, Tanya, Jack and Annie