This week’s freezing temperatures have the potential to kill our fruits. The unseasonably warm weather in January and February caused the fruiting perennials (peaches and blueberries are our focus) to blossom early. Their landscape counterparts, the Bradford pears, tulip trees, etc that you see around town and in yards, have also bloomed well before the last frost date.
Swollen buds and buds in stages of bloom are not very cold/freeze hardy and can sustain damage that negatively affects fruit set/shape/taste or they can be killed outright, which means no fruit. We made the choice to protect our blueberries at the cost of the peaches and pears. We don’t have the means to protect it all, so we make tough choices. We’re not sad, it’s just a truth of life.
The blueberries have been sprinkled with water each night as the temperatures drop below freezing. This coats the bush and, most importantly, the buds/blooms in a jacket of ice. The thermal properties of ice in turn protect the buds/blooms from temperatures in the mid and low 20s; the range in which most damage occurs.
If all goes well, we’ll have delicious, plump blueberries available for U-Pick this summer!
Vegetables at market this week: Microgreens Mix, Toscano Kale, Collard Greens, Mustard Greens, Green Onions, Radishes, Spinach, Head Lettuce (Butter King and Winter Density), Romaine Lettuce, Carrots, Fresh Turmeric, Arugula.