Around the Homestead

Strawberries and Fruit Trees

     Our strawberries are finally ready for picking. We didn’t think we would get much this year, since the sheep got out and into the patch a couple weeks ago. We hoped for enough to eat and some to freeze, but didn’t think we would have enough for jam besides.

     What a surprise we had at the amount of berries we picked so far last week. In two days we had 3 batches frozen and I made a batch of jam for the fridge. This week I hope to make up several batches of jam to can.

     I am using a different method to make the jam. John doesn’t like a lot of sugar in things, and I didn’t want to use unorganic pectic (pectin comes from apples which are on the dirty dozen list.). I’m using agar powder as a thickener, using just enough sugar to give a hint of sweetness.

     It is roughly 3/4 tsp. of powder to a cup of mashed fruit. After cooking the jam will seem too runny. Don’t add any more thickener. It will get thicker as it cools down.

     The jam is delicious on fresh, warm bread. Sparky devours it. 

Last Monday, we all went to get some fruit trees to add the our ochard. Last year we put in 2 EZ Pick peach trees, and 1 EZ Pick apple tree. This year, we brought home 1 EZ Pick peach tree, and 2 EZ Pick apple trees. Next year we hope to add some pear trees.

     EZ Pick trees are bigger then semi dwarfs, but not as big dwarfs. John had some dwarf trees in the past, but they got bigger then he wanted. We thought about going with semi dwarfs, but they would not give more then enough fruit to eat. After more research we learned about EZ Picks, and settled on those.


3 thoughts on “Strawberries and Fruit Trees

  1. Awesome! I love homemade jam. Not sure if the funnest part is making it or eating it.? A few years back we made lilac jam, dandelion jam, and red clover jam. I think we finished the last of what we made around the beginning of this year. If we can find room we will make more this year. Around this time of the year is the best time to pick the red clovers, lilacs and the dandelions. They really taste good. They might sound like they would taste grows but they actually taste really good. You just have to know what parts of the flowers to use and what parts not to. Plus you don’t wanna use ones that have been sprayed.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Hi Sarah,
    boy it looks like some people are growing fast!
    As far as the pectin you can make your own from apple peels, cores and and other scraps, speaking of which we still have bags of apple scraps to make into pectin, and jelly sitting in the freezer from last fall, yikes!
    love and miss you all,


    1. Thank you Charisa. Yes, I’ve read about making your own pectin. Its easier right now with little ones to stick with the agar. Maybe once the children are a little older, I’ll have more time. Yes, they are growing fast. We love and miss you too.


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