Monday, August 29, 2011

Peach and Apple Picking: Jossy Farms

I thought I was done with Jossy Farms after bringing home 34 pounds of peaches a couple of weeks ago. Apparently, I'm a sucker. I actually wanted to pick some Gravenstein apples. They opened at 9am and I made the trek out to Hillsboro. This time I decided to get there at 9am. Last time we got there at 9:30am and the parking lot was full!

As I pulled off Hwy 26, there was a line of cars. Was there an accident? What was the hold up. As we inched further along the road, I realized what this was. It was a line of cars going to Jossy Farms. Seriously???
There were TONS of people and most of them were coming out to pick peaches. People had boxes and boxes. They quickly ran out of carts. I weighed my boxes and set out. I wasn't going to get peaches but I decided to get just one box full. I had heard that the Veteran peaches were excellent canning peaches. The peaches that I picked last time (Vivid) were easy de-skinning peaches but they were so juicy that it was difficult to de-pit them and my peaches ended up looking raggedy.

Here's a row of peach trees.
I was able to fill my box off of just a few trees. Mmm....peaches! The Veterans weren't as pretty as the Vivid peaches. In fact, they look rather plain and bland. I hope they make up for it in dead winter when I dig into a jar of these beauties!

I ended up with 12 1/2 pounds of Veteran peaches. All the fruit were $1 a pound.

I quickly moved onto Gravenstein apples. I had heard that these were great for applesauce. I *heart* applesauce. I love it unsweetened with no cinnamon. I thought I would try making my own applesauce this year. It seemed simple enough.
I found out Gravensteins cook down really well and have a nice tart to them. Here's trees filled with apples.

After picking my apples, I stood in this gigantic line of people to weigh and pay for my finds. Some people in line were saying that they've never seen Jossy's this busy before. Me either!

Here's the peaches my neighbors collected. Yummy!!
In the end, I took home 12.5 pounds of Veteran peaches and 32 pounds of Gravenstein apples.
Jossy Farms has a cult-like following. It was amazing to see so many people there on a Monday morning. The age range was wide. There were older folk, middle aged folk and even young children there.

If you decided to go out to Jossy Farm, call ahead first to see if they're open. They only open the farm when there are ripe fruit. This season it has been open only a few times (since the fruit crop was relatively sparse this year). You can also sign up for their emails too and they'll email you when they plan on being open so you can plan ahead.

Here's some tips:
- Bring your own boxes and/or containers. For peaches, you'll want to layer them 2 deep at the most. Ripe peaches bruise easily.
- Wear tennis shoes. It's a farm and although they keep things really tidy, there are fruit on the ground.
- Bring cash or checks only.
- If you have one, bring your own wagon. They have some available but quickly get taken up.

Jossy Farms
31965 NW Beach Road
Hillsboro, OR 97124
ph:(503) 647-5234


Rowena... said...

Speaking just for Italy, I hope pick-your-own fruit farms will eventually have cult followings like they do in the states. It just hasn't caught on in a big way over here. I told my husband about these places in the mainland US, and he was like, why? These type of farms do exist, even if on a very small scale, but it takes word-of-mouth and lots of it to get the people to join in. I recently found out about an apple farm about an hour from ours and insisted to my husband that we should go to check it out. Omigod...what fun! He's never done anything like this, dang city boy, so hopefully this time won't be the last. I don't remember the types of apple they were, but at 1€ a kilo (2.2 pounds!), I thought that was a deal. We (he) picked almost 5 kilos.

Doc said...

One can never have enough peaches, yummm! Our fruit trees are very sparse this year, I will be lucky to get one bucket full of the Gravensteins.

~Holly~ said...

Rowena: I hope u-picks get started up in Italy! It's really fun and cheap. Until then, MORE FOR YOU!! Haha, that's a lot of apples!!

Doc: I heard that this year was bad for the peach crop in Oregon. Sorry about your fruit trees! I hope they double up next year for you!!