Here’s a preview of the fresh fruits and vegetables being harvested from some of our farms in September, from The FruitGuys regional produce buyers. To see what’s being delivered in your box this week, visit fruitguys.com/mix and choose your region.
Fall will bring lots and lots of potatoes, in all shapes and colors, as well as plenty of onions and garlic. Winter squashes both familiar (Acorn, Delicata) and exotic (Blue Hokkaido, Red Kuri, and Cinderella) will appear this month too. Cranberries should pop up here and there, along with some quince, if we are lucky.
The first wave of summer apples is fading but look for more to come in early September. Locally we can expect exciting and unique varieties of Gala apples, like the Buckeye Gala and Crimson Gala, along with the ever-munchable Honeycrisp. Plums and pluots will be going strong in the beginning of September. Peach season here in Pennsylvania is winding down, but some late-season peach varieties like the Jersey Queen and Autumnglo will continue through the month. Pears are starting to hit their stride! Look for favorites such as the Seckel and Potomac. Delectable Asian Pears will arrive this month, too.
For the produce industry September is a very exciting time of the year, filled with color, abundance, and variety. It is also a time of transition away from the soft, sweet, warm-weather stone fruit of August toward fall’s grapes and crisp apples and pears. Although farmers on the Sacramento River Delta have been harvesting Green and Red Bartlett Pears for a couple of weeks already, September will bring lots of other varieties from other locations. Asian pears are being harvested at Gabriel Farm in Sebastopol and Comice Pears are coming out of Yellow Wall Farm in Santa Cruz. For apples, the Gravensteins are all picked and Sonoma County farmers are moving on to other varieties. Devoto Gardens has organic Galas and they are beautiful as well as flavorful. Prevedelli Farms in Watsonville and Hale’s Apple Orchard in Sebastopol continue to provide us with delicious apples. Red Flame Grapes are here but will be replaced by Thompsons and Scarlett Royals by the end of September. Strawberries and raspberries are still here but will wind down in September.
Vegetable highlights include tons of heirloom tomatoes, beets, potatoes, lettuces, cucumbers, and lot of other greens. There are dramatic variations in what is being harvested depending on geographical location. In the Capay Valley, where the average temperature is still in the 80s, warm-weather fall crops prevail, like heirloom tomatoes, summer squash, and cucumbers. In Marin and Sonoma, we are seeing lots of cabbages, lettuces, and peppers. Lastly, Santa Cruz’s chilly coastal microclimate continues to bring crops that prefer colder weather like beets, potatoes, and greens.
While the summer is winding down for much of the country, Phoenix is still experiencing temperatures in the low 100’s! Expect to see delicious California plums and a variety of California pears--including Asian pears, Seckel, and Comice varieties. Also, you will see California apples and late season Valencia oranges in the boxes in September.
The turning of the seasons marks a change in the local fruit and vegetable menu. Winter squashes such as Red Kuri, Acorn, Delicata, and Spaghetti will take the stage, along with a rainbow of colorful potatoes. Iron Creek Farm will harvest one more round of Romanesco broccoli and possibly some baby cauliflower. Genesis Growers will take us through the tail end of pepper season, while Growing Home’s Wood Street Urban Farm will continue providing us with herbs galore. Jonagold, Honeycrisp, and Macintosh apples will fall from the sky as this year’s Michigan apple crop is bigger and better than ever!