Love, love, love apple picking season at our old orchard tucked in along the shores of Big Stone Lake. I’m saying, “It is ooooold in the life of an apple tree.”
My dad started planting apple trees as his retirement project in the late 1970’s. Some guys simply don’t like that word…retirement. Or possibly, they do like it so much that they become inspired to act on the thing they have always wanted to do but could only find the will to dream. Dad fell into that thought somewhere and proceeded to plant, tend, graft, experiment with, pick and love up on over 1000 apple trees during his 25 years of ‘retirement’. Many of the trees have gone to wherever old apple trees go to retire. Nearly 400 of the hardy,beautiful, loaded-with-apple trees are still doin’ their thing in the peace-on-earth prairie acreage known locally as Hillside Orchard. It’s a joy to pick, press cider, sell and use the apples.
If we do by chance utter the word retirement near the brave trees still bearing in the orchard…..we hold it down to a whisper.