Thursday, April 19, 2012

Sunshine on my shoulders...

Makes us all happy!

Trees are warming up. Family is getting excited for a bigger harvest this year. 

A glass of vin de Noix (walnut dessert wine) awaits for those who live close enough to visit (by reservation only!)

More and photos to come on Saturday!

Sunday, June 26, 2011

2011 Green Walnut Harvest dedicated to our husband, father & grandfather (Papa)

Our husband, father, grandfather and great grandfather, Paul Dennis Clary III,  passed away on March 17th, just 11 days after my last post.  We have been heartbroken since and miss him terribly.  It has been hard to keep up with emails, website and blog updates, ranch work and everyday life.  The weather was "off" too.  Rain, rain, snow, hail, sun?, more rain, more snow.  Cloudy skies and unsettled weather matched the way we've been feeling.  Just two weeks ago, we still weren't sure if we'd have a harvest this year.

But then the sun came out, the leaves grew and the tiny little walnut wannabees appeared to soak up the sun.  We began harvesting this weekend.

We dedicate this harvest to the man that loved this ranch so.  He's the reason we have this piece of heaven for if he hadn't loved it, farmed it with care and dedication, we wouldn't have it to love.  We think of him every time we look at the sky, the trees, the tractors, the barn, and his "new" tool benches.  What a great example to us all.  A stand up honest man, a good farmer,  a caring veterinarian, a loving husband, father and Papa.  Sure miss you, Dad.

Sunday, March 6, 2011

More Southern Exposure

This winter, I've watched all of the third season of Northern Exposure. Remember? That 1990's television town; Cicely, Alaska. Joel, Maggie, Chris, Holling, Ruth Ann, Ed, Marilyn, all of them. I loved it then and it speaks to me still. In each episode Chris, the local radio station disc jockey/spiritual leader of Cicely connected life to literature, be it through Curious George or The Call of the Wild, finding meaning in the pages, translating life lessons. Everyday life in an isolated community didn't seem isolated at all. Instead, the very opposite.

I stopped in at Bocconato on Friday and visited Giovanni. Hearing about the hustle and bustle of their Monday nights reminded me of "The Brick". Okay, no beer, no darts, a more worldly menu, but a small community gathering place, ripe with laughter, stories, characters, and even singing at the corner table.

I wish that they had rebuilt our old logging town and the old Fair Play Hotel when it burned years ago. Maybe we will one day.

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

"So then neither the one who plants or the one who waters is anything, but God who makes things grow" 1 Corinthians 3:7

It's time! Though some are too small, some are just right. We started harvesting yesterday and will ship early Wednesday morning. We're chasing our tails trying to fill orders. Always too much to do and with the harvest window open and shut so quickly- the pressure is on. We will "stock" the Local Harvest store with as many 5 pound boxes as possible. Those who have contacted me via email prior to today will have priority, and delivery will be close to June 24, the feast day of Saint John the Baptist!

The trees don't readily "let go" of these immature walnuts- what good mothers they are! It takes a strong hand and a quick turn to take them away from the branch. A harvest walk in the orchard is especially nice with company. Aunt Teresa Klare walked and picked with me this morning. What a lovely way to work- we solved lots of problems while we hunted for the low branches bearing our little green walnuts and chatted. Time passed quickly.

Originally, we expected a good crop but it appears the late rain did interfere with
pollination. As we gaze upward, there are few nuts to be seen... We're grateful for what we are able to harvest and wonder what everyone is making. They are traveling all over the United States, north to Washington, east to NY, south to Texas.....

Monday, May 17, 2010

First signs of walnuts in the orchard!

They are here! Lots of doubles and triples. You can see the female flowers at right, as compared to a penny. The swollen base of the flower is where the nut will develop. Right now, they are smaller than President Lincoln's head. It will be a while before they really look like the green walnuts that we quarter, then cook, macerate, bake or pickle.....

"Behold, my friends, the spring is come; the earth has gladly received the embraces of the sun, and we shall soon see the results of their love!" ~ Sitting Bull

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Big Time Mowing

BEFORE ~ Grass & Lupine. Lots of whirlygigs that stick in your socks and on the dogs fur. It sure is foxtail season. The grass stands about 3 feet tall in the highest places. It's still a little damp. Hardest part about mowing is putting the mowing attachment on the back of the tractor. A call to cousin Gino Klare and he was there lickity split to help us out. We learn something new from him ALL the time.

DURING ~ That's Xavier Jackson Macy on the Kubota. He is a GREAT ranch hand. (And I'm not just saying that because he's my nephew and godson.) Whatever needs doing, he volunteers to do it. He's a real gem and a hard worker to boot.

AFTER ~ This photo is taken looking north, towards the canyon leading down to the Middle Fork of the Cosumnes River. It looks so nice. Rain in the forecast, guess we'll be mowin' again!

Thursday, May 6, 2010

I see skies of blue....clouds of white, bright blessed days.... dark sacred nights

and I think to myself, what a wonderful world! It's so lovely outside. Deer hiding in the tall grass jumped as I walked across the deck this morning. A healthy young fox rummaging through debris on the burn pile, scampered away as soon as he saw me. A multitude of birds sang from the nearly bare branches throughout the orchard.

The walnut trees have a distinct red hue right now. The fresh new leaves emerge in a reddish brown burst and they will gradually transition to green. So far there are no signs of green walnuts. I believe this is the latest spring we've had in the past several years, but perhaps we say that every year! The grass is growing vigorously beneath the trees. I will have to use the tractor with the mower attachment to get it mowed down. I can't wait. It will smell so good and green!