Monday, August 15, 2011

An Education in Cherries

So this great adventure moving to Montana is not just fun and games....  I am getting a real education in gardening and tending to an orchard.  Would you believe that on our orchard alone we grow 36 varieties of cherries.  36 varieties?  I would have never guessed there were so many types, and I am sure there are more beyond what we grow.  Before this education, I knew of Bing, but other than that didn't give much thought to types.  Maybe just expensive compared to inexpensive cherries, or the big yummy ones from Costco compared to the little whimpy ones from the regular grocery store.
  (Ray in the orchard checking on the cherries)

I've really got to hand it to my father-in-law.... he's so knowledgable about plants and trees.  He has really expanded his orchard for the sake of finding out what varieties will grow and thrive in this climate.  He diligently documents his findings and can rattle off any information you may or may not want to know about any of the trees.

Me, well I am slowly starting to learn the names of some of them.  I sort of graze through the orchard in the evenings, tasting the different cherries as I make my way through the rows.  I think the art of tasting cherries must be a little like wine tasting in that you have to develop the ability to taste all the different notes.  In the meantime, I will just keep tasting.... emerging from the orchard each evening with a little more knowledge and a full belly!  And now I'm left wondering what to do with all these cherries?

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