Bear Swamp Orchard & Cidery

Certified Organic Hard Ciders and Apples

Already harvest season!

After a busy summer, the apple crop looks good. Growing conditions could not have been more different from last year, with plenty of rain and overall cool temperatures. Following last year's difficult season we were apprehensive, but the apples have done well. We have small amounts of fruit to harvest now - peaches, early apple varieties - but the bulk of our crop, including the pick your own varieties, will not be ready until the third week in September.

This time of year, we get a lot of calls from people expecting that our orchard has apples to pick. There is no arguing with ripening schedules, though, and most fruit picked too early never develops the flavors they could have. This is why eating a fresh picked, ripe piece of fruit is a totally different experience than eating most fruit found in the grocery store, and is what we want people to experience when they get fruit here. Our Liberty apples should be good by the time we open for picking. Meanwhile, we have picked all the Red Astrachan and Williams Pride apples. Williams Pride will be available for sale in our farmstand until they are gone. They are intensely flavored, sweet and juicy, with a deep red skin that tints the flesh. They store so much sugar that they often get what is known as hollow core - very ripe apples look waterlogged in the middle because there is too much sugar to stay inside the cells. This sugar gets reabsorbed by the apple if stored for a little while. We often have to pick the Williams Pride when some of our wildlife - deer or bears - discover them. They will spend every night eating all the apples they can reach until they are gone, and the foxes eat anything that hits the ground. It's an apple everyone loves.

We have sold most of the Reliance and Red Haven peaches, and have just picked the next variety, Contender, that we will be sorting for sale this weekend. This is the first year we have a significant crop from this variety, so they will be fun to try out.
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