Skip to main content

Posts

Showing posts from 2018

Harvest is Here

Almond harvest is here! Almond trees are shaking all over the valley and it's officially harvest season. About a week ago we started shaking on our farm.





But before you even start shaking, mowing is the true first sign of harvest. We don't just mow to make the orchard a cleaner environment. Grass could cause harvest equipment to get clogged up and unnecessary debris get stuck with the almonds  Weeds also take vital nutrients and water away from the trees and root system.


Once mowing is done, the orchard is ready for shaking! I like to say we shake the L out of them. Makes sense if you remember where I grew up. In Northern California we say A-MEND, just like salmon. None of that ALL-MEND business. But regardless of what you want to call it, almond shaking is how we get the nuts on the ground.



After we started shaking, the next day we were ready to start sweeping. Sweeping is the process of getting the almonds in nice, clean windrows so they can be picked up. Unfortunately, th…

Harvest is Here

Almond harvest is here! Almond trees are shaking all over the valley and it's officially harvest season. About a week ago we started shaking on our farm.





But before you even start shaking, mowing is the true first sign of harvest. We don't just mow to make the orchard a cleaner environment. Grass could cause harvest equipment to get clogged up and unnecessary debris get stuck with the almonds  Weeds also take vital nutrients and water away from the trees and root system.


Once mowing is done, the orchard is ready for shaking! I like to say we shake the L out of them. Makes sense if you remember where I grew up. In Northern California we say A-MEND, just like salmon. None of that ALL-MEND business. But regardless of what you want to call it, almond shaking is how we get the nuts on the ground.



After we started shaking, the next day we were ready to start sweeping. Sweeping is the process of getting the almonds in nice, clean windrows so they can be picked up. Unfortunately, th…

Grandpa's Garden

Gardening is cheaper than therapy...a common phrase we hear all the time. I never really thought much about it until this weekend when I was in my Dad's garden.



My Dad’s garden also known as Grandpa’s Garden. He spent many of hours out there; planting, watering, weeding, harvesting and who knows what else. We never really understood the reasons he spent so much time out there. It was his time. His therapy. It was what he enjoyed to do. Gardening was his therapy. His time to relax and focus on those little plants.
He always had a large raised bed garden. When I was kid I have fond memories of the garden and growing veggies with my Dad. He always planted his garden on Good Friday. God would help his garden grow if he planted it then and he always had a bountiful garden. Tomatoes, bell peppers, zucchini, squash, cucumber, eggplant, green beans, pumpkins, sunflowers and whatever he wanted to try. It was his place that he loved.


Now it is a place of remembrance. A place to be connected …

What to do with all the fresh fruit from your fruit tree

It's summer and nothing says summer more to me than fresh fruit right off the tree. I am lucky to have grown up with a whole row of fruit trees in my Dad's orchard. He has a few of everything; plums, peaches, nectarines, cherries, apples, pomegranates, oranges and even figs. Summertime just isn't complete without a fresh peach to eat as you're walking around the backyard.


When we moved into our house we live in now, we were lucky to have a peach and persimmon tree already in the backyard. They were large and established. In fact, we moved in July and the peach tree was kind of like a welcome home present. The first week we moved in, the peach tree was already gifting us with fresh fruit. Some may have been a little overwhelmed with a whole peach tree but I was rejoicing.


Within the next few years we added some dwarf trees to our collection too; lemon, nectarine, plum, pear, mandarin and lime are now part of our family too. Whether you too have a backyard fruit tree, …

Keto Brownie Bites

This week is 4th of July. It falls in the middle of the week so you have three options. Take two more days off work and make a five day weekend, take four days off work and get a whole week or stay at home. Even if you choose to take more days off work for a long weekend, which way do you go? Do you make a long weekend and end with 4th of July or do you start the weekend with 4th of July and take the following weekend off?


As a farmer, I don't have to choose. We are busy on the farm and therefore, leaving is not an option. Hopefully the 4th will be a half day of work so we can enjoy a backyard bbq or something low key at home.


Regardless of the option you choose, there will be lots of bbqs, backyard parties, swimming and endless eating. Whether it is a potluck, your own party or just the family, I bet you will be having some great food.




I don't know about you, but when it comes to potlucks or hangouts with friends, I always indulge. There is just always so many good looking …

My Daddy

Dad. Father. Papa. The one who holds the family together. Patriarch. Leader. Bear hugger. Most memorable laugher. Teacher of life lessons. The one who taught me to drive. Passion instiller. Farmer. Daddy. 

Dads are one of the most important people in our lives. My Dad meant so much to me. He was the reason I am who I am today. I remember from a young age farming with my dad. Driving around with him checking fields. I even had a small table in his office at the farm that I pretended to work just like him. He taught me so much about agriculture. He is the reason I love agriculture and farming. He gave me my passion for agriculture. He was so proud that my sister and I wanted to be involved in agriculture too. But he hated that I went to school so far away. And even though I didn’t come home to farm with him as planned, I married an almond farmer who he loved as his own son. 


  
It pains me to write about my Dad in past tense. There will be no more memories and future planning with my…

Walnut Day

We all have our day. A day to celebrate you. Whether it's your birthday, Mother's Day, Father's Day, Grandparents Day, Teacher Appreciation Day, there is a day to celebrate you. There are also a million days to celebrate things. Pizza lover's day, Donut Day, Puppy Day, well today is National Walnut Day.


Today is a day to celebrate walnuts. I may be Almond Girl Jenny, but walnuts are a close second in my nut heart. My Dad is a walnut grower and I grew up surrounded by walnuts just as much as I grew up surrounded by almonds. Walnuts are my favorite baking nut. There is just something about banana nut bread that makes me happy.


Walnuts also make me healthy. They are a healthy punch of protein, fiber, magnesium, phosphorous, and healthy carbohydrates. Who knew one nut could have so many health benefits?


But did you also know that walnuts are the only nut that has any significant omega 3's? Omega 3 is an essential fatty acid that is a plant based food source and walnu…

Walnut Bloom

The seasons are a changing. It is crazy how overnight winter was over and spring was out. Now this week, I feel like summer is coming with hot 90 degree days. But before the warm up, last week I spent a nice cool week in Chico visiting family.


There are a lot of things I miss about Chico but one is seasons. Chico has spring and more than just for a week! Can you tell I like seasons. Trees were blooming and pollen was flying. I may have grown up in Chico and it will always be home, but my sinuses forgot what all that pollen was and man were my allergies going crazy.


My parents are lucky to still live on the main ranch where they settled in the 1970's and made home. It is a beautiful walnut orchard now and the catkins were out while we were there. Catkins are the walnut's equivalent to a flower. They are essentially a pollen sack.







Walnuts are wind pollinated so they don't rely on bees like almonds and other fruit trees. The pollen will blow from one tree to another with wind.…

Aunt Elaine's Chinese Chicken Salad

It's spring and that means the weather is finally nice enough to enjoy being outside. We have even been eating dinner outside on the patio. I love spring and getting to enjoy outside. When summer comes, let's face it, it is WAY too hot to really enjoy being outside. Those 100 plus degree California days aren't ideal for backyard barbeques.


Spring always brings back memories for me. Spring is a happy time. It is a time for potlucks, family dinners and backyard barbeques. One thing I enjoy during spring is my husband barbequing in the backyard and all I have to do is fix the sides. I really enjoy side dishes I can make ahead. This way I can be outside playing and relaxing with the family while the barbeque is going. No one likes having to be stuck in the kitchen inside while everyone else is outside.


Well, I have a perfect side dish for your spring time dinners. My husband's Aunt Elaine makes the best Chinese Chicken Salad. When I first moved to the Central Valley, Ela…

What I have been up to...

Life gets crazy, spring especially. It just has a way of sneaking up on you in the most unexpected kind of way. It surprises you and brings a whole lot of new with it. Whether you are ready or not.


I shared a few of my thoughts about spring yesterday on social media.
Spring is a time for all things NEW!
New life, new growth, new ideas, new journeys, new challenges. We may not like the new doors that open or we may be rejoicing for the new opportunities that are being presented...


My spring has definitely brought a basket of all things new. It's been a crazy few weeks for me and I feel like I have been slacking when it comes to social media and the blog. I do have a good reason though, so I thought today I would give you an update on what I have been up to and explain my absence.


Spring's first storm brought a wave of sickness to our house. The weekend before spring break started, my son started getting sick. Cough, sore throat, snotty nose, the whole gambit. It was not a fun…

When Three Ag Girls Join Forces...

Through this crazy blogging, agvocating, social media world I am always amazed by the young women I meet. We are strong, passionate and hard working women. I love getting to connect with fellow bloggers and get a little insight into other farms. All our farms are different, yet we are all connected via our passion for agriculture and of course the dairy aisle. I am blessed to have met some great ladies and connect with them on a personable level that I wanted to share some of them with you! Today, I introduce you to Chelsy, aka Organic Dairy Mama and Nicole, aka Michigan Farm Girl .

I met Nicole this last December through a blogger exchange and instantly knew this was a girl to follow. She then introduced me to Chelsy. You may ask yourself, what does an organic dairy farmer, Michigan dairy woman and a California almond farmer have in common?  More than you’d think, and I bet it is some of the same things I would have in common with you…

About Chelsy!

I grew up in Wisconsin on a 70 cow c…

Modern Agriculture

What is Modern Agriculture?
Modern agriculture could be a scientist in a lab creating the newest impossible non-meat hamburger. Modern agriculture could mean the development of GMO seeds to decrease pesticide use. Modern agriculture could be turning on your irrigation system from an app on your computer. Modern agriculture could just mean the use of GPS in tractors, or maybe just the use of a tractor on a farm. Modern agriculture could mean something different to you depending on how you look at agriculture.






Modern agriculture is essentially developing practices that help farmers increase efficiency and reduce the amount of resources to meet the world's needs. But depending on your interpretation of the term you could already have created your opinion of modern agriculture. 2% of the population is involved in agriculture but 100% of the population has opinions.
That's the situation we face today, consumers tend to develop their own opinions of modern agriculture without unders…