Monday, June 25, 2012

The Early Cherry Pies

At last weekend’s Veggie Fest in West Chester, Pennsylvania, everyone was talking about the cherry pie — not just because it was delicious, but because no one expected to see pies made from fresh local cherries this early in the season. It is the earliest beginning of the cherry harvest season anyone around here can remember.

This should not have been such a surprise after the Summer in March weather pattern of late winter and early spring brought out the earliest cherry blossoms we had ever seen. It’s no secret: plants respond to the weather.

And it is not just the cherry trees. This year’s harvest work will start a few days or a few weeks early in most of the United States because of the unusually warm early spring. For most of us, what this means is that we shouldn’t wait till August to start looking for fresh local produce. Fresh local produce is some of the most nutritious and least expensive food you can get, and this is the time of year to get it. In Pennsylvania, the harvest season is already underway.