Tuesday, June 14, 2016
In Season: Hear That Rumble? It's Summer Coming!
It's mid-June and already heads are spinning among farmers, produce buyers and customers. Last year's spring temperatures brought crops to market a couple of weeks early, but with this year's temperatures in May and June at times topping 90 degrees, we're seeing some fruits and vegetables ripening as much as a month (or more) earlier than usual. So buckle up your seat belts, folks, because according to local produce maven Josh Alsberg at Rubinette Produce it's going to be a crazy roller coaster ride of deliciousness this summer.
Blueberries are in plentiful supply, so look for them to be available for at least the next month. And you may be seeing peaches and nectarines in stores now, but Josh warns that these first ones are not the most flavorful—he recommends waiting a couple of weeks for the best varieties for your pies and preserves. It'll be worth it! And due to the vagaries of weather and the whims of the gods, there's apparently a smaller-than-usual harvest of apricots this year, but they will be available for the next several weeks.
Gathering Together Farm are bringing a few varieties of cherry tomatoes to market, along with their early Siletz tomatoes. Heirlooms and beefsteak tomatoes will start popping up this weekend and arrive in earnest by the end of the month. (It's a good thing this whole "climate change" thing is a hoax or I'd be tempted to start some serious hand-wringing about now. [Hashtag: just joking])
Look foward to local table grapes, figs and melons around the middle of July, with the first new crop of apples, like Gravensteins, available at the end of July. But, as Josh made sure to reiterate, all of this is speculative: "Only Ma Nature knows the real harvest schedule."