Here’s a preview from The FruitGuys regional produce buyers of the fresh fruits and vegetables being harvested in December by some of our farms. To see what’s being delivered in your box this week, visit fruitguys.com/mix and choose your region.
The cold brings some delicious and exotic-looking produce! Expect to start seeing a steady supply of pomegranates as well as Fuyu and Sharon fruit persimmons. Citrus should be popping up in the form of clementines, Satsuma Mandarins, and Red Navels (aka Cara Caras). The citrus we source comes out of Florida, and it may look a little different than citrus from California––scarred a little and not quite as “orange”––but the taste can’t be beat.
On the veggie side of your plate, there should be cauliflower, broccoli, cabbage, and Brussels sprouts galore. You’ll also enjoy lots of roots and tubers: potatoes (both sweet and starchy), carrots in all colors, parsnips, jerusalem artichokes, and horseradish. If it grows under the ground, it should have popped up by December.
December is an exciting time for California citrus varieties. By the first of December, mandarins will be abundant from Placer County. And, did you know a recent study by the U.S. Department of Agriculture confirms that Placer County’s popular Owari Satsuma mandarins contain loads of synephrine, a natural antihistamine that relieves cold and allergy symptoms? Look for Cara Cara oranges and Minneola tangelos to be available for the first time in December. We will continue to have Washington-grown apples and pears through the end of the year.
On the veggie side, winter is a time for things that grow in the soil, like beets, potatoes, carrots, and kohlrabi. Sonoma County will have bountiful chicory and cabbage harvests with vibrant colors. And if you love dark greens like kale, chard, and collards, December is the perfect month to enjoy them.
Winter is upon us and the root cellar is calling! This winter, we will continue to get roots from farms such as Genesis Growers and Iron Creek Farm. Expect beets, potatoes of all shapes and sizes, onions, parsnips and celeriac. December will bring the last of the regional apples from Michigan. Mick Klug Farm in St. Joseph, MI, continues to supply us with some of the crunchiest, most flavorful apples around, including Granny Smith, Empire, Honeycrisp, and Cameo varieties. We may even see some whole wheat flour from Breslin Farms. As the local farms rest and prepare for spring, specialty citrus from Florida and the West Coast will tide us over.
December is an exciting time in the Southwest. While the rest of the country experiences snow and ice, we enjoy beautiful sunny days with temperatures in the 70s and cool crisp evenings. We rejoice in our gardens as the winter rains are ushered in from the West, and we reap the fruits of our fall plantings. Our farmers’ markets are burgeoning, our gardens overflowing, and our citrus trees beg to be picked.
December is also a time to savor the last of the local apples. Valley Farms LTD will provide us with their tasty farm-direct Granny Smith, Red, and Gold Delicious apples. Duncan Family Farms is in full-production mode and will supply us with a rich variety of locally and organically grown lettuces, kales, chards, beets, and radishes. Local navel oranges, grapefruit, and tangerines from the Mesa-area will begin to fill our boxes as Arizona citrus readies itself to be enjoyed by all!