Sunday, April 19, 2015

Late Summer Fruit Harvests (Plums and Figs)

Here on the farm, we have been observing the harvesting seasons of fruits, mainly plums and figs. It has been amazing being able to see directly where the food comes from, and how hand intensive the entire process is.

 Plums everywhere.

Right in front of our house is a plum orchard, and during January we often heard the tractor spraying insecticide on the plum trees. 

At six in the morning...


Walking past the orchard and seeing the fruit ripening daily is special, and when in early February groups of workers started harvesting (in a similar way to harvesting peaches), we went to take a look. 

Ripening plums. 

The trees are literally covered in purple. 
 Teams of plum pickers.

 Filling up the crates.

The boys got a ride. 

Bags ready for the next day. 

It was lots of fun going through the orchard after the harvest and picking all the plums they missed. 

In middle March, another big harvest began - figs. We went to take a look at how they pick and pack figs at a neighboring farm (for exporting overseas), and the farmer arranged to give us some of his rejects for our piglets. Export quality fig rejects, we discovered, mostly have only a few odd marks, and maybe a tiny crack here and there. 

The fig orchard.

Hand picking - note the gloves. 

The perfect fig. 

They really have to search for the figs. 

In the packinghouse.


Weighing the figs (they have to follow a strict weight limit - the figs are flown overseas and they are only allowed a certain weight on the plane).

Fancy packaging.

A whole heap of figs.

After a few days the piglets' legs were permanently purple.

I made fig jam, and we also dried a lot of figs. It turned out really delicious. 

Dried figs. 

Making jam. 

1 comment:

  1. Wat is daai pers vy se naam? Ek moet vriende vertel van die eerstes wat ons daar geproe het wat heelwat groter was as woolies s'n. Jy word 'n egte boeremeisie!


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