Sunday, September 30, 2012

30th September, Pear Harvest

Rather a typical day for the time of year--a morning with fog rising in filmy swaths from Big Creek, then burning away as a gentle sun. gained the ascendency.
I sat on the porch with Little Edward the Kitten cuddled beside me, absorbing the difference in sounds and texture between this autumn day and one in spring.
At first I thought, "How quiet it is", but as I settled to watch and listen I realized that, like the colors of autumn--the emerging golds, russets, hints of burnished orange--the sounds of birds are merely muted.
Several bluebirds teetered on the power line, serene, with the frenzy of mating and nest-building behind for another year.
Even the mockingbirds had little to say as they flitted from the lantern post--to the goat willow tree--to the maple--and back around.
Three crows flew overhead--and crows are seldom silent. They carried on a desultory hollering as they passed slowly by.
The branches of the centenarian pear tree were burdened with fruit--rough yellow-green shapes
demanding to be picked.
More of them had fallen and were lodged in the pasture grass--many show a large 'bite' taken out; others have become a feast for wasps with incredibly long yellow and black bodies.
I think the photos tell the story--I'm needed in the kitchen.
One canner full of bottled pears is boiling furiously, more are simmering in light sugar-syrup, ready to be poked into the line-up of glass jars.
The floor between back door, range and the living room where J. is peeling pears, is becoming a
trail of stickiness. 
We will rejoice in this bounty come winter!


  1. What a wonderful harvest! I loved the pictures.

    Have a great week ~ FlowerLady

  2. You summed up the beauty of Autumn so well in your commentary - and those pears look tasty too!

  3. Envious - no pears round here, but we do have the apple harvest from 6 trees though you can forget the Christmas Eater again this year! Apples much smaller but worth picking all the same.

    You certainly have a good crop from that venerable tree and will enjoy eating the fruit in the depths of winter. Loved the photos of you all at work.

    I struck lucky and got 10 Kilner jars and lids for £2 at the weekend. They need new lids and seals but that's a start . . .

  4. What a wonderful picture you painted with your words.
    Your kitchen was a homely hive of industry ...what a bountiful harvest ...what yummy treats will appear over winter I wonder....I love pear crumble made with cinamon and brown neighbour used to pop over a few bags but he has had his pear tree chopped down now.Boo Hoo xx

  5. Nothing is more delicious than some home-canned pears in the middle of winter.

  6. What gorgeous looking pears - not like the ones you get in supermarkets. I wish we had the room for fruit trees!


  7. FL; Ideally my photos would show a tidy background--it will never happen. Best to focus on the produce!
    John; I have always enjoyed the exercise of finding words to capture a mood or a scene. So many phrases have become time-worn, maybe because they 'work' best.
    BB; I shall have to find a photo of a 'Kilner jar'--I expect they are a variant of the Mason/Kerr/Ball jars which are the standard here. The price for a case of new jars has gone sky-high. G. collected several dozen second hand last week by putting a memo on the local 'swap' program.
    I've learned to recognize these 'Old Timey' pear trees as we travel in this area--they all have the towering, scraggly, asymetical stance, not handsome trees, but so hardy and productive.
    Angie; I love fruit crumbles--I only make them when we have guests or I can take them to a church pot-luck meal. J. feels that all fruit should be topped with pastry--which is rather more of a bother to make. Crumble topping is so homely--I make mine with real butter worked into a mixture of rolled oats and good flour--the brown sugar/cinnamon goes right on the fruit. Add whipped cream---oh my!
    Lillian; The thought of winter meals sustains me [almost!] through the whole messy process of dealing with harvest bounty!
    Em; These pears have a fairly unique taste--almost a hint of spice. Flesh is crisp, more grainy than most market pears.