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Spring at Chestnut Run Farm

Spring is a beautiful time at Chestnut Run Farm for it is then that our pear and apple orchards bloom. The blooms form in large clusters yet for quality fruit production, we can allow only one flower from each cluster to remain.

To grow large, high-quality fruit, we must blossom thin. Lise and I spend long hours in the orchards during the bloom period snipping off blossoms to reduce the crop load.

Asian pears in bloom
Early spring blooms on pear trees
Asian pears in bloom
Large clusters of blookms prior to thinning.
Asian pears in bloom
Many hours of labor are required to thin the orchards.
Asian pears in bloom
Only a few blossoms remain after thinning. Note that more blossoms are on the ground than are left in the tree.

Thinning gets really boring and when I've had all I can take of it, it's time for a break. I tell Lise that to grow quality fruit, you have to keep the trees happy. Pear trees must like mandolin music, right? No matter, I play for them anyway.

Playing my Weber mandolin during pruning Playing my Crystal Forest mandolin during pruning
Playing the mandolin is one of my other passions besides making wine. I enjoy the renaissance and classical genre and the trees respond well to it. The photo on the right above shows me playing my hand-crafted Crystal Forest mandolin to the young Shiro plum trees during bloom. It did the trick, as they produced a nice crop of Shiro plums in 2013. As a result, we were able to produce our first Japanese plum wine for introduction in spring 2014


List the Cat at Chestnutrun Farm

Lise is an avid volunteer at the Salem County Humane Society. Here on the farm, our own cats like to help with the orchard work.

Asian pears in bloom Asian pears in bloom

Spring is also lambing season at Chestnut Run Farm.

These photos show our diligent Katahdin ewes with their beautiful lambs. These lambs are about one day old. The orange color on their bellies is from the iodine we use to dip their navels which is needed to keep them healthy.


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No grapes were harmed in the making of these wines!
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