Ha! First year in many that we beat the local apricot thieves to our harvest and can actually offer apricots at all. Only large boxes, but it’s better than last year, or the year before, or….
I have to admit I’ve somewhat sidelined taking care of the apricot grove after years of pointless care, so the trees are in need of caretaking. As soon as the fruit is gone, we’ll do the summer pruning, mulching and feeding. Perhaps my local, vocal, neighborhood remarks about stealing from others finally sent the message needed. Or the thief moved away. What’s true is that sometimes locals don’t see stealing a neighbor’s fruit as, well; stealing. And in this case, it’s not just stealing from us here, but from everyone participating in our CSA.
Too, our loquats weren’t stolen this year, either; and large shares got a taste of this unusual back yard fruit. Similar in flavor, I really prefer loquats to apricots; the skins are tart and bursting with flavor. The seeds are almost always viable, by the say, so you can easily start your own tree from one of the large black seeds found at the center of the fruit. When I first grew loquats in San Clemente, I had to be careful not to toss the seeds onto the lawn, because we’d have so many loquat trees growing in the lawn in a couple weeks. So, they are really easy to get started! You won’t usually find loquats in the grocery stores because they don’t store or travel well; and are rarely as cosmetically perfect as has come to be expected. But those challenges aside, they’re worth enjoying, especially if you like to try different fruit.