News and blog

Welcome to the blog
Posted 12/3/2012 12:55pm by Gregg Keckler.

Hello all,

We hope you had an excellent Thanksgiving and impressed your friends and relatives with the delicious and healthy items (as well as not-so-healthy, but still delicious baked goods...) that you received from your November Delivery orders.  The online store is now open for the December Delivery! The December Winter Delivery will be on Tuesday, November 20th. 

You can follow this link, orchardcountryproduce.com and go to the Store on the top navigation bar.  Browse through the categories, select your items, and checkout and pay via paypal.  If you prefer to pay via check, just fill out the information for mailing a check instead and we will follow-up with you.

When you reach the end of the checkout process, please select the appropriate pickup location.  If you do not see the location you want listed, please e-mail us before you complete your order.  The online store will close on Friday, December 14th at 11:59pm.

Attention: NGS Folks
- Gregg will be setting up & running a special farmstand at NGS on December 20th, but anything that you order from our online store will be delivered on TUESDAY (December 18th) with the Winter Delivery.  Please let me know if you have any questions about these two dates.
    
We'll be sending out our monthly "Farm News" e-mail in the next few days to the General Mailing list.  Even though the farmers market season is over, we are still keeping busy planting in the greenhouse, making jam like there's no tomorrow, and cleaning out the barn.  Sometimes we post photos of these activities on our Facebook page so you can follow along!

If you have any questions, please feel free to shoot us an e-mail and we will get back to you ASAP.

The Kecklers @ Orchard Country Produce

Posted 9/26/2012 8:48pm by Gregg Keckler.
Please forward this email to any list serve with the church and surrounding communites!  Thanks


Farm Market Stand  Open this Saturday! September 22
Just a reminder:  We are ALWAYS there.  We have never missed a market or Farm Stand Day.  So you can depend on us!.  No matter what the weather holds we will be there!
  
  Come to:

   Cedar Lane Unitarian Universalist Church  - 9601 Cedar Lane, Bethesda   9am-1pm


   St Luke's Episcopal Church - 8009 Fort Hunt Rd, Alexandria   8am-1pm 

Let us know if you would like to buy anything in large quanities for canning or freezing.  We can provide it for you.  


We have chicken! FRESH!   
 
  
Concord Grapes!

Yellow Bartlet Pears!


Asian Pears!  

Fresh Apple Cider!
 

Chestnuts!
 
Sun Gold apples are here!  tart-  crisp 
Macintosh apples, Honey Crisp, Golden Supreme, Red Jonathan, Jonagold!  Stayman Winesap, Northern Spy Great apples are HERE!
 

Stanley PLUMS! 

 Many varieties and colors - Cherry and Pear tomatoes!  
    

RED TOMATOES!  Nice sandwich tomatoes! 



Roma Tomatoes!       
 
 
  
 Summer Rambo and MacIntosh for sauce.  These are softer and tarter apples that make good sauce.  Buy them by the quart or the peck!



Lettuce Mix!  Salad Greens


 Broccoli!


   Winter Squash - acorn, spaghetti, fairy tales, carnival, butternut

 Summer Squash!   Yellow Squash

   Zucchini!
  

 CUCUMBERS! 

Eggplant!

 Sweet corn!!     We have MIRA - a good sweet variety that will hold its delicious flavor for several days.  We also have INCREDIBLE - a great yellow corn.


Red beets and Gold beets!   
 

SWEET CANDY ONIONS!   

  
cabbage, kale, Swiss chard!  Time for stir fry!


Red potatoes! 

White new potatoes!


Green Beans!   


Spaghetti Squash    
     
  
 
 
We have our own sweet breads - Banana, Pumpkin, and Zucchini.


Homemade pies - Cherry, Apple, Blackberry, Peach 
We make our own jams and jellies and natural applesauce.


HONEY! 
 
Get ready for the grill!


We have BEEF!  Our own lean pasture-raised beef grown slooowly the way it should be!


Steaks- Filets, NY Strips, Del Monicos, Sirloin, rib steaks, round steaks

  Ground Beef!


We have pork - steaks, chops and 7 inch links. We now have breakfast links as well!

 Our hogs are raised on grass/woodlands.  They love rooting under leaves and eating acorns.  I have been grilling these sausages every Saturday for a while.  They are better tasting and BETTER for you than hot dogs. 


free range EGGS from our own chickens!



We will also be offering cheese from Whispering Brook Farm.  Ed Breckbill makes his own cheese at his farm in Chambersburg, PA.  His cheeses are delicious with a short list of ingredients:  unpasturized milk, vegetable enymes, sea salt.  Check out his cheeses!


 We are looking forward to seeing folks on  Saturday, September 29

Stop in, look around and take home some fresh greens, vegetables, berries,  and baked goods!


If you have any questions, let us know - www.orchardcountryproduce.com or send an email ocp@orchardcountryproduce.com



Gregg, Louise, Virginia, and Oliver Keckler - Orchard Country Produce and Fruit Farm                         


   
                


        


Posted 9/6/2012 5:30pm by Gregg Keckler.
Dear Folks,
   We have almost made it through another summer.  It is hard to believe that the summer has gone so quickly.  Oliver planted the last batch of arugala and lettuce for the year.  We are digging big potatoes and a few sweet potatoes.  We have been gathering spaghetti squash for a week now.  The apples are very early.  Gala are all picked.  Honey Crisp is being picked now.  The Yellow Bartlet Pears are delicious.  We are picking Concord grapes this week.  We still have quite a bit a of summer vegetables and we will have them until frost.  Our heirloom tomatoes are about finished though.  We still have cherry tomatoes and lots of red ones and very good Romas for sauce and roasting. 


We hope the you have had a good summer. If anyone would like to sign up for the Fall CSA, there is still time.  You can go to the website www.orchardcountryproduce.com  and sign up.  You can either pay right there with paypal or you can send us a check for $160 for a half share or $300 for a full share.  Let us know if you have any questions.  


If you haven't checked out our facebook page then you haven't heard the good news that Stuart, our son and his wife, Tamara had their second daughter last week!  We are very excited about the new little farmer in the family.  Tamara's family is visiting from Mexico for the happy occasion.  I hope you enjoy the pictures!


We are still considering having a Winter Delivery at least until January this year.  If you liked it last year and would like to join again, let us know.



Have a great September! 

Gregg, Louise, Virginia, and Oliver Keckler - Orchard Country Produce and Fruit Farm             
Posted 8/8/2012 10:19am by Gregg Keckler.
Dear Folks,

   Gregg and Oliver are planting green beans now for (hopefully) fall harvest.  We are harvesting a lot right now:  peppers, beans, kohlrabi, eggplant, watermelon, cantaloupe, tomatoes, tomatoes, tomatoes, cucumbers, beets, okra, blackberries, plums, early apples, summer squash, zucchini ...the list goes on.  The blueberries just finished this week.  The rest are for the birds!  We are about 2 weeks away from butchering chickens.  Another beef went to the butcher this week.  The turkeys are growing well and the hens are laying.  What more could you ask for?  TIME!!! - we are extremely busy.  Once our college help leaves and the schools are back in session we will lose some valuable workers here on the farm.  But we can see rest around the corner - November and December are coming.

  All the apples, peaches, plums and pears are early this year.  Klapp's pears were picked this week - cling free peaches have been in for at least 2 weeks.  Most of the apples look good.  Granny Smith and Ida Reds have some spot - from all the rain early on, but the rest look good.  We should be picking Gala in 2 weeks.  We are spraying for stink bugs.  They are particularly bad right now on peaches, apple, and cherry trees.


If any folks would like to sign up for the CSA for the fall session, we will be taking subscriptions through September 4th. www.orchardcountryproduce.com We also have a facebook page where you can follow us.  We posted a family photo a few weeks ago if you would be interest.  We were missing one daughter in the picture.
  If you would need any fruits or vegetables - please let us know.  We would be happy tro serve you.  Now is the time to get great local, fresh produce and fruit.


Gregg, Louise, Virginia, and Oliver Keckler- Orchard Country Produce and Fruit Farm         
Posted 7/25/2012 2:14pm by Gregg Keckler.
Please forward this email to any list serve with the church and surrounding communites!  Thanks


Farm Market Stand  Open this Saturday! July 28 


Just a reminder:  We are ALWAYS there.  We have never missed a market or Farm Stand Day.  So you can depend on us!.  No matter what the weather holds we will be there!
  
  Come to:

   Cedar Lane Unitarian Universalist Church  - 9601 Cedar Lane, Bethesda   9am-1pm


   St Luke's Episcopal Church - 8009 Fort Hunt Rd, Alexandria   8am-1pm  NEW LOCATION!

Let us know if you would like to buy anything in large quanities for canning or freezing.  We can provide it for you. 


NEW ITEMS this week!


HEIRLOOM TOMATOES! - You have been asking and now they are finally here.  We have Lemon Boy, Pineapples, Pink Brandywine, and Black Tula!

 
PEACHES!  White and yellow and Dount peaches!   These are very sweet and perfect for just eating!

Canteloupes!

NECTARINES!

Apricots!

Methley, Santa Rosa, Shiro, Ozark PLUMS! 

 Many varieties and colors - Cherry and Pear tomatoes!  
    

RED TOMATOES!  Nice sandwich tomatoes!    
 
Blueberries!   Red Raspberries!   Blackberries!    Berries are in - time to make muffins and ice cream!

 Great Rambo and transparent apples for sauce.  these are softer and tarter apples that make good sauce.  Buy them by the quart or the peck!


Currents! - time to make jam!     

 Summer Squash!   Yellow Squash

   Zucchini!
  Time for summer steamed squash - Squash on the grill!

 CUCUMBERS!  pickling and others


OKRA and first of the season -

Sweet corn!!     We have MIRA - a good sweet variety that will hold its delicious flavor for several days.  We also have INCREDIBLE - a great yellow corn.


Red beets and Gold beets!   
 

SWEET CANDY ONIONS!   

lettuce, salad greens !

 
cabbage (small heads), kale, Swiss chard!  Time for stir fry!


Red potatoes!  These are great for kabobs on the grill! 


White new potatoes!


Green Beans!      
     
  
 
 
We have our own sweet breads - Banana, Pumpkin, and Zucchini.


Homemade pies - Cherry, Strawberry/Rhubarb, Blackberry, Peach and Blueberry


We make our own jams and jellies and natural applesauce.


HONEY! 
 
Get ready for the grill!


We have BEEF!  Our own lean pasture-raised beef grown slooowly the way it should be!


Steaks- Filets, NY Strips, Del Monicos, Sirloin, rib steaks, round steaks

  Ground Beef!


We have pork - steaks, chops and 7 inch links. We now have breakfast links as well!

 Our hogs are raised on grass/woodlands.  They love rooting under leaves and eating acorns.  I have been grilling these sausages every Saturday for a while.  They are better tasting and BETTER for you than hot dogs. 


free range EGGS from our own chickens!



We will also be offering cheese from Whispering Brook Farm.  Ed Breckbill makes his own cheese at his farm in Chambersburg, PA.  His cheeses are delicious with a short list of ingredients:  unpasturized milk, vegetable enymes, sea salt.  Check out his cheeses!


 We are looking forward to seeing folks on  Saturday, July 28
Stop in, look around and take home some fresh greens, vegetables, berries,  and baked goods!


If you have any questions, let us know - www.orchardcountryproduce.com or send an email ocp@orchardcountryproduce.com



Gregg, Louise, Virginia, and Oliver Keckler - Orchard Country Produce and Fruit Farm                         


   
                


        


Posted 7/19/2012 9:54am by Gregg Keckler.
Sign up today for the CSA for the summer session if you have not done so yet.  We are planning lots of tomatoes, corn, peaches, canteloupe and early apples.  In addition we have green beans, beets, Swiss chard, kale, cucumbers, and a lot of great summer vegetables. 

You can sign up and pay with paypal right now or you can sign up with invoice and send us a check for $160 for a half share or $300 of a full share. www.orchardcountryproduce.com

Let me know if you have any questions.


ATTENTION:   JBS, NLC, the WYOMING - these stops are still shy of the minimum number of shares.  


Louise Keckler - Orchard Country Produce and Fruit Farm


www.orchardcountryproduce.com    
Posted 7/18/2012 1:10pm by Gregg Keckler.
Please forward this email to any list serve with the church and surrounding communites!  Thanks


Farm Market Stand  Open this Saturday! July 21 

  Come to:

   Cedar Lane Unitarian Universalist Church  - 9601 Cedar Lane, Bethesda   9am-1pm


   St Luke's Episcopal Church - 8009 Fort Hunt Rd, Alexandria   8am-1pm  NEW LOCATION!


NEW ITEMS this week!

PEACHES!  White and yellow and Dount peaches!   These are very sweet and perfect for just eating!



Canteloupes!

NECTARINES!

Apricots!

Methley, Santa Rosa, Shiro, Ozark PLUMS! 

 Cherry and Pear tomatoes!
    

RED TOMATOES!  Nice sandwich tomatoes!    
 
Blueberries!   Red Raspberries!   Blackberries!   GOOSEBERRIES!  Berries are in - time to make muffins and ice cream!


Currents! - time to make jam!     

 Summer Squash!   Yellow Squash

   Zucchini!
  Time for summer steamed squash - Squash on the grill!

 CUCUMBERS!  pickling and others


OKRA and first of the season -

Sweet corn!! 


Red beets and Gold beets!   
 

SWEET CANDY ONIONS!   

lettuce, salad greens - get the greens now - they are almost over until fall!

 
cabbage (small heads), kale, Swiss chard!  Time for stir fry!


Red potatoes!  These are great for kabobs on the grill! 


White new potatoes!


Green Beans!      
     
  
 
 
We have our own sweet breads - Banana, Pumpkin, and Zucchini.


Homemade pies - Cherry, Strawberry/Rhubarb, Blackberry, Peach and Blueberry


We make our own jams and jellies and natural applesauce.


HONEY! 
 
Get ready for the grill!


We have BEEF!  Our own lean pasture-raised beef grown slooowly the way it should be!


Steaks- Filets, NY Strips, Del Monicos, Sirloin, rib steaks, round steaks

  Ground Beef!


We have pork - steaks, chops and 7 inch links. We now have breakfast links as well!

 Our hogs are raised on grass/woodlands.  They love rooting under leaves and eating acorns.  I have been grilling these sausages every Saturday for a while.  They are better tasting and BETTER for you than hot dogs. 


free range EGGS from our own chickens!



We will also be offering cheese from Whispering Brook Farm.  Ed Breckbill makes his own cheese at his farm in Chambersburg, PA.  His cheeses are delicious with a short list of ingredients:  unpasturized milk, vegetable enymes, sea salt.  Check out his cheeses!


 We are looking forward to seeing folks on  Saturday, July 14!
Stop in, look around and take home some fresh greens, vegetables, berries,  and baked goods!


If you have any questions, let us know - www.orchardcountryproduce.com or send an email ocp@orchardcountryproduce.com



Gregg, Louise, Virginia, and Oliver Keckler - Orchard Country Produce and Fruit Farm                         


   
                


        


Posted 7/16/2012 10:47am by Gregg Keckler.
Dear Folks,


 This is the last week of the srping session.  It has been a unique session with more summer than spring.  That makes each year different!  We have enjoyed having everyone with us for this spring.  We hope that you will sign up for the summer session if you are able.  You can go to the website: www.orchardcountryproduce.com and click membership update to sign up for the summer session. 

The deadline to sign up is JULY 19 - this THURSDAY sign up now!  If you sign up with paypal you can pay right then.  If you decide to send a check, you can take a deduction on the price.  Price for checks - $160.00 for half share and $300.00 for full share. 

 I will be sending everyone who ordered extras for this session emails with the balance due later this week after your delivery - Be watching for it. 

This week's shares - will include: peaches, apricots, zucchini, summer sweet onions, kale, basil, tomatoes, blueberries


The peaches are still considered cling peaches - in other words just eat them do not try to cut them off the stone.  some of them have been free stone especially if they are very ripe. The onions are great.  They are good Candy sweet onions.  They are great raw or in stirfries or on the grill.  The tomatoes are just the smallish red ones yet.  We will be picking the heirloom tomatoes in about two weeks.   These tomatoes are great on sandwiches and in salads.  You may be getting tire of blueberries.  It is very easy to freeze them.  Just put a cup or a half of a cup of berries in a zip loc bag and freeze them.  They would be great to find on a cold day in January! 


Enjoy this week's things.  Have a cookout - do some grilling, but most importantly- GET OUTSIDE!  Whether it is raining, hot, muggy or perfect weather going outside will refresh your body, soul, and mind.  You will be amazed at what you can get done if you take a half hour outside each day!   



If you will not be back for the summer, thanks for supporting our farm and being a part of our little enterprise for this year.  We look forward to seeing you again next spring.  Keep in touch!


Gregg, Louise, Virginia, and Oliver Keckler - Orchard Country Produce and Fruit Farm


www.orchardcounntryproduce.com
Posted 7/11/2012 10:26am by Gregg Keckler.
Please forward this email to any list serve with the church and surrounding communites!  Thanks


Farm Market Stand  Open this Saturday! July 14

 Come to:

   Cedar Lane Unitarian Universalist Church  - 9601 Cedar Lane, Bethesda   9am-1pm


   St Luke's Episcopal Church - 8009 Fort Hunt Rd, Alexandria   8am-1pm  NEW LOCATION!


NEW ITEMS this week!

PEACHES!  White and yellow!   These are very sweet and perfect for just eating!


NECTARINES!

Apricots!

Methley and Early Gold Plums! 

Shiro Plums!
    

RED TOMATOES!  Nice small sandwich tomatoes!    
 
SOUR CHERRIES!  Get them now!

Blueberries!   Red Raspberries!   Blackberries!   GOOSEBERRIES!  Berries are in - time to make muffins and ice cream!


Currents! - time to make jam!     

 Summer Squash!   Yellow Squash

   Zucchini!
  Time for summer steamed squash - Squash on the grill!

 CUCUMBERS!  pickling and others


OKRA and first of the season - Sweet corn 


Red beets and Gold beets!   
 

SWEET CANDY ONIONS!   

We have  spring onions, radishes

lettuce, salad greens - get the greens now - they are almost over until fall!

 
cabbage (small heads), kale, Swiss chard!  Time for stir fry!


Red potatoes!  These are great for kabobs on the grill! 


White new potatoes!


Green Beans!      
     
  
 
 
We have our own sweet breads - Banana, Pumpkin, and Zucchini.


Homemade pies - Cherry, Strawberry/Rhubarb, blackberry and Blueberry


We make our own jams and jellies and natural applesauce.


HONEY! 
 
Get ready for the grill!


We have BEEF!  Our own lean pasture-raised beef grown slooowly the way it should be!


Steaks- Filets, NY Strips, Del Monicos, Sirloin, rib steaks, round steaks

  Ground Beef!


We have pork - steaks, chops and 7 inch links. We now have breakfast links as well!

 Our hogs are raised on grass/woodlands.  They love rooting under leaves and eating acorns.  I have been grilling these sausages every Saturday for a while.  They are better tasting and BETTER for you than hot dogs. 


free range EGGS from our own chickens!



We will also be offering cheese from Whispering Brook Farm.  Ed Breckbill makes his own cheese at his farm in Chambersburg, PA.  His cheeses are delicious with a short list of ingredients:  unpasturized milk, vegetable enymes, sea salt.  Check out his cheeses!


 We are looking forward to seeing folks on  Saturday, July 14!
Stop in, look around and take home some fresh greens, vegetables, berries,  and baked goods!


If you have any questions, let us know - www.orchardcountryproduce.com or send an email ocp@orchardcountryproduce.com



Gregg, Louise, Virginia, and Oliver Keckler - Orchard Country Produce and Fruit Farm                         


   
                


        


Posted 7/9/2012 11:03am by Gregg Keckler.
This week in the shares -


Red potatoes, Green beans, Basil, Plums, Blueberries, Swiss chard, Cucumbers.


We are just beginning to pick green beans.  These are a very tender variety.  I know that basil goes with tomatoes, but since the tomatoes are not quite ready yet.  Try pesto sauce with pasta or potaotes.  Another thing I have been doing with basil is making basil lemonade.  it is amazing!  I make about two quarts of lemonade then add between a half to a full cup of basil leaves.  Put it in the blender or processor with about two cups of ice cubes.  It is very good!  My husband will drink two quarts of this all by himself on a Sunday afternoon without even realizing it!  Give it a try.  We will be giving lots of basil.  If you remember from last year - folks were actually starting to root their own basil on the kitchen table from our cuttings!  Basil will keep very well in a jar with water on the counter.  I kept some that had come back from market for almost a whole week.  Try to keep the leaves out of the water.


We are stocked full of plums and blueberries right now.  Enjoy the berries - make muffins, eat them with sugar and shortcake, use with yogurt, make smoothies.  I make popcicles with one pint of blueberries, one cup of vanilla yogurt, one half of sugar, and one cup of ice cubes - in the blender.  You can eat this for a dessert or you can freeze it for popcicles.


I am going to be sending another email later about the sign up for the summer session.  The deadline is coming soon for the sign up.  July 19th - Deadline


 

Check out the online store for any extras.  
  
blueberries-

apricots (seconds)-  These are delicious, but they have "the black spot" (to quote Robert Louis Stevenson) - it is a bacterical spot from not enough spray.  Check them out if you would like to peel them, eat them raw or use for cooking or jam. 

basil -

soft peaches-  These are delicious, soft, ready to eat.  They are CLING peaches, so they are difficult to cut off the stone.  I have been cutting them up and eating them.  I just peel the shell off and then cut around the stone.  It is not a perfect job, but it is very easy to get the most of the peaches.

pickling cucumbers- Make a batch of pickles!  I have not made any yet this year, I always make dill pickles (both sweet and sour).  I am thinking I will make some bread and butter pickles this year.  I haven't made them in years.


Enjoy that week.  I am glad that we have a little reprieve from the extremely hot days.  We are planting sugar baby watermelons for a late crop in late September and October.  The turkets and the chickens are looking great.  We should have chicken by the second week in August.
  

Let us know if you have any questions about anything. 


Gregg, Louise, Virginia, and Oliver Keckler - Orchard Country Produce and Fruit Farm