Fruits of the vine



Summer has definitely arrived with a vengeance this year. However, the hot weather does have its benefits. Local farmers have a plethora of the fruits of the vine (and plants). Cantaloupes, yellow squash, zucchini, cucumbers, a variety of peppers, okra, and tomatoes are plentiful.

At the Blount County Farmer’s Market each Tuesday, Thursday, and Saturday, from 7 a.m. until 11 a.m. or until they sell out, the amount of locally grown produce and goodies will make it difficult to decide what to buy. With peaches, peppers, corn, cucumbers, squash, peas, green beans, tomatoes, cantaloupes, okra, jellies, relishes, and so much more, you will not leave empty handed.

As of yesterday, market vendors had bodacious sweet corn, chef’s choice and carbon heirloom tomatoes, Goliath vine-ripe tomatoes, eggplants, and bumblebee and cherry princess tiny tomatoes. They also have blueberries, squash, red and white potatoes, blue lake green beans, and a good variety of sweet and hot peppers. Many of these selections will be available throughout the next few weeks.

Allman Farm and Orchard is offering both red defender and grape tomatoes, obsession corn, contender peaches, Aruba and bell peppers, squash, cucumbers, and Texas sweet onions. Also, Allman Farm and Orchard accepts the farmer’s market nutrition program checks.

Fill your basket with delicious u-pick blueberries at Barb’s Berries on County Highway 27. You can also find these berries at the farmer’s market.

Baswell Farms is currently picking zucchini and yellow squash, cucumbers, jalapeno, banana, and bell peppers, green and heirloom tomatoes, and okra. Stop by their produce stand, say hello, and pick up some wonderful tasting produce.

Copeland Farms has delicious cantaloupes beginning this week. Darryl continues to have sweet corn, hot and sweet peppers, squash, and cucumbers.

Hazelrig Orchard has been in the fields harvesting a variety of produce this week. They currently have Freestone peaches, nectarines, Lodi apples, cantaloupes, okra, squash, zucchini, ripe and green tomatoes, cucumbers, and bell, sweet banana, and jalapeno peppers.

McCray’s Old Field Farm has freshly picked green beans, corn, tomatoes, and squash. Suzy has made a new batch of lemon balm dried tea, another batch of watermelon jelly, and a freshly made batch of corn cob jelly. Their quantities are limited and depend on the weather, so call ahead to ensure they have what you are looking for.

At Snead Produce you will find locally grown peaches-and-cream corn, squash, cucumbers, peaches, green tomatoes, potatoes, and sweet banana, bell, and jalapeno peppers. Be sure to visit them at their Oneonta or Snead location.

Witt Farms have windblow peaches, okra, squash, onions, peppers, and tomatoes currently available. You can visit them at their Ala 160 location or at the farmer’s market.

Farming is a hard job, but the benefits are great. The farmer’s appreciate everyone’s continued support buying local. It’s a win, win for everyone.