A RevelationWhen we moved onto our place, we were excited about all the little fruit trees. Visions of cherries and plums and peaches and apples danced in our heads! Yeah, I couldn't wait to head out to my own back yard to harvest all that wonderful fruit.
Well, that dream was quickly shot to outer space and replaced with the horrors of pruning shears, fungus, and pesticides that go along with fruit tree ownership. And guess how much this Hoosier Girl wanted to learn about pruning and spraying. Zip. Nada. Nilch. Nope, not happening. Besides carting 4 tween-agers to all their various extra-curricular activities, working full time, teaching Sunday School classes, taking college classes and taking care of the elderly parents/grandparents was more than enough for my little plate- thankyouverymuchbutI'mfull.
So the fruit trees had become overgrown, monsters that had to be avoided as they tried to remove my scalp and poke my eye out when I mowed, dropping their limbs for extra yard work every time a spring storm came along, stinky rotting apples and peaches littering the ground, another eyesore to ignore. If I close my eyes, they won't be there, right?
Then the kids moved out, I retired from my job, and college dreams got replaced with the desire to grow my own chemical-free food. By then, we were down to only a few fruit trees. I keep my eyes on the peaches every year and every year they are destroyed by a fungus or a wind storm. And the apples? Those trees put out apples like crazy. Wonderful, large, red and yellow apples that have BUGS. So every year, I feed those lovely apples to the critters, thinking they aren't good for anything else.
But aren't they? I got into a discussion about buggy apples with my wonderful aunt (who also happens to be a biologist which makes her REALLY COOL in my book) about how I couldn't eat my own apples because they had been contaminated by bugs. And do you know what she said?
Revelation Alert She said, "Eat them, the bugs won't hurt you."
Are you kidding me? Of course they won't hurt me. Another example of how much my thinking has been shaped by industrial food suppliers: all those perfect, shiny, spotless apples in the store had me thinking that my own apples were inedible. DUH (hiding my head in shame at my own gullibility.)