If you see a sign at the side of the road that says "15 miles to The Fruit Shack," do yourself a favour and pay a visit to Niagara-On-The-Lake fruit grower Steve Pohorly.
Along with his beautiful daughter and wife, he welcomed a group of bloggers onto his farm last weekend as he shared with us his passion for agriculture. (And a basket full of fresh-from-the-farm fruit!)
While touring his apple orchard, we learned about three-legged ladders.
We sampled sweet and juicy honeycrisp apples.
And we marveled over the endless number of apples that a single tree can produce.
Further along, we came across some blue plum trees and sampled the delectable fruit.
Unfortunately, we were saddened to learn that they would be removing the plum trees due to lack of demand. What a shame. Everyone agreed that these plums were incredibly tasty and yet, we wondered why we rarely, if ever, see them at our local grocery store.
We were also surprised to learn that a large number of peaches had remained unsold this past season and as a result went to waste. It was disheartening to discover that the amount of time and energy invested in growing and harvesting fruit could be so futile.
Dedicated to ensuring a thriving and sustainable farming industry in Ontario, Farmers Feed Cities values the importance of fostering collaborative partnerships with farmers such as Steve Porhorly, as well as industry, community organizations, school groups and the public. As such, they are encouraging Ontarians to ask questions about the food we bring into our homes. If it's seasonal Ontario produce you're looking for, is it available where you regularly shop for groceries? If not, do you take the time to ask the store manager to stock their produce department with locally grown food? Or do you shrug it off and instead opt for produce that had been harvested 45 days prior to arriving at your local store?
Perhaps it's time to re-think our shopping habits. Personally, I think it would be a great idea to stop by places like The Fruit Shack whenever we are in the area to pick up some fresh produce. I love that they take great care in harvesting fruit at just the right time to make their "more fruit, less sugar" homemade jams.
At the very least, pop on by for their old-fashioned butter tarts. They are simply divine!
I would like to extend a warm thank you to Steve Pohorly and his family for taking the time to speak with us and showing us around his farm. I would also like to thank Farmers Feed Cities for making the introduction. Stay tuned for a special Pohorly Family Apple Crisp recipe as well as additional photos taken later that afternoon at Southbrook Vineyards.