A friend of mine from work lamented to me that his peach tree was doing too well this year... too well? As in he had TOO MANY peaches? How can that even be possible? I guess if you live alone and don't typically eat a lot of peaches, a tree full of peaches could be a problem. I bummed an invitation to his house (June 3rd) to 'help' with his 'problem' and over the span of 45 minutes we were able to pick two five gallon buckets full of peaches. Hooray for free food! Hooray for free food that is helping someone else with their 'problem' (ei-yi-yi). The crazy part was that after picking all we could (we only brought two buckets) you could barely tell we had even visited the tree. Perhaps it is possible to have too many peaches? Nah...
Two five gallon buckets = 10 gallons of peaches = about 35 pounds of peaches
After two nights of after 10 pm canning and jam making, those 35 pounds turned into 7 quarts of sliced canned peaches, 8 jelly jars of jam, 2 half pints of jam, 3 quarts of peach juice (jam that I was too lazy to measure and cook to set), 1 peach pie, 5 mornings of peach oatmeal, 1 peach crisp, lots of fresh peach snacks. My whole family was starting to turn orange with a slight fuzz erupting from our skin.
Guess how many pictures I took of peach picking... none (I brought the camera, but chickened out about asking my coworker if I could take pictures).
Guess how many pictures I took of the buckets full of peaches.... none.
Guess how many pictures I took of the sticky night of jam making... none.
Guess how many pictures I have of the final product... one, fuzzy one that seems to have focused in on the knife block instead of the peaches.
--under ripe is better for canned peach halves
-- We happened to get nearly the perfect number of chilling hours this winter, the bugs were lessened by the late freeze, my friend used miracle grow fertilizer stakes (I did not ask how many), he covered half the tree with a bird net... all of this lead to an amazing peach crop!
--the peaches were small, about golf ball to softball sized. I later read that if he had knocked off half of the blooms the tree would have produced bigger peaches. Even if they were small, they were delicious.
--A five gallon bucket will fit in my fridge!
--fruit flies LOVE peaches... and now my kitchen is invaded with clouds of nasty buggy-ness.