Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Farm Stroll

Over the weekend, the King and I too a Farm Stroll.  Now what is a Farm Stroll you might ask?  Well you can read about it here.  But basically it is an open house of local farming operations in DeKalb County Illinois.  We were only able to attend 3 of them due to time constraints on our part but I'm so glad we did it.

Our first stop was Jonamac Orchard; by far the most interesting of our 3 stops.  A "few" of the apples trees....

Any guesses on what the bottom photo is.... It's a gadget to prevent frost in the orchard.  Basically it's a helicopter blade that rotates when the temps get below freezing.  Fires are started in 50 gallon barrells around the perimeter of the orchard and the blades turn keeping the warmth down inside the orchard.  They will lose 10% of their crop if temps reach 29 degrees and 80% of their crop if temps reach 25 degrees.  So as our guide said, that 4 degrees is critical to be above.  

Some young apple trees.  Notice how they are attached to a pole and you probably can't see it but there is also a wire strung from pole to pole to "train" the branches so you will have a solid row of picking down each side.  

And it's not just apples, we bought a bottle wine too.  There are lots of activities for the kids (of all ages).  Later this fall there will be a pumpkin patch, and a corn maze.  How FUN!!!  I can't wait to go back when the apples are ready starting in August.  I hear their apple donuts are to die for.

Our next stop was a robotic dairy.  Again interesting....  Cows come at their own will (anytime day or night) to the milking stations, are fed, udders cleaned, and milked and no human hand ever touches them.  

Our last stop was an organic vegetable garden.  No photos... sorry.  

It was a nice day with with wonderful company.  


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