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Hazelnut Harvest 2019

11 Oct

We are on the homestretch of harvest for filberts, also known as hazelnuts. The weather is changing into fall here on Oregon, and while we have had pretty good weather this harvest, I’m sort of ready for the rain.

Here is a video of me harvesting a younger orchard of Jefferson hazelnuts.

Right now you can buy our hazelnuts in all Wilco Farm Stores, and come November in Albertson/Safeway and Bi-Mart! Oregon orchards is the brand and here are my personal favorite ones!!!

They are soooooooo good!!

This also wraps up harvest for all our crops here on the farm. We have a little more ground to work but other than that we will be starting to put things away for the winter.

It’s always a good feeling to wrap up another year on the farm!

The Beginning of Hazelnut Harvest

18 Sep

One of the most common questions I get asked about our hazelnuts…why don’t we shake our trees to get the hazelnuts down????

Well, the time of year that we harvest, in the fall, we often get nice blustery rain and wind storms. The goal of course is to get the nuts knocked down and out of their husks.

The goal is also for this kind of weather to last a few days and then settle down. Which leaves us with a nice lovely window to make some dust and not mud with our harvesters. This doesn’t always happen, but a girl can dream right??!!

Here are a few photos of the ground beneath the trees after one particularly stormy day.

And here’s to hoping (or praying) that the weather straightens right out next week and we get to do some good dusty (not muddy) harvesting.

****Update: I wrote this post yesterday. Then I woke up last night to pouring buckets of rain. So….now that I’m so happy the nuts fell down I am also praying that they aren’t floating away! For some reason Mother Nature didn’t seem to get my very specific request for the type of weather I was needing (haha!). And that my friends is, how do they say it, oh yeah…”that’s farming for you”!!!

Squirrel Trapping in the Orchard

20 Aug

We have so many squirrels….and you wouldn’t think that those cute, puffy tailed little creatures could really cause that much harm.  Until you’re a farmer who grows nuts.  And as it turns out….do you know what squirrels love to eat?  Nuts.

We have been battling squirrels for years.  It’s sort of part of the territory when you’re raising the food that these guys enjoy most.  But this year for some reason populations have boomed!  I’m not kidding.  So people always ask, do you try to trap them?  And I usually just laugh, because I happened to be married to a very dedicated squirrel trapper.  And this year it’s been so bad that I’m scared to even walk into our orchards afraid I might get hit by the trap line (not really but close!).

Here is just a quick view of the damage that they can do.  Here is an area of our orchards that doesn’t have a lot of activity at the moment. 

The dirt below the tree is very clean and free of debris.  The nuts are all still on the tree where we would like them to stay until harvest this fall.

And here is a tree that has been hit very hard. 

Can you see all that material under the tree??  Can you see all those nuts on the ground, or more accurately all those empty shells where the nuts used to be?

So, “Yes!” is always my answer when folks ask if we have tried trapping, we have about 36 traps out everyday in fact.  And have caught around 43 squirrels this seasons….but who’s counting (haha…it’s us…we are counting!).

If you have any good advice, or even bad advice (we will take anything!)  What has worked, what hasn’t???  Leave you ideas below, I’ll check back in when I’m done checking traps.

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