Saturday the 4th of February: Thou Shalt Glean and a Review of Last Saturday

The weather in North Florida is beautiful. Per this morning’s weather report we are just close to 10 degrees warmer than last year, apparently due to the occurrence of El NiƱo. That being the case our time to glean stats a bit brisk but ends with a short pants and t-shirt afternoon.

This past Saturday found us in East Palatka at two residential homes to harvest the most grapefruit I have ever seen. The second house specifically had two large trees that allowed us to climb them to reap the benefit of its production. Unfortunately I had to leave prior to harvesting a fourth house (while we were at home number two-part of our group was at another house) so I cannot report how much fruit we saved from going unused.

Amidst the success were two huge failures on my part: 1) no pictures and 2) trying to clip fruit resting on a power line. For the latter I am grateful I am not dead as my partially rubberized gloves would surely have not saved me from electrocution. Beyond that was the continued gardening tips and education as to the different varieties of citrus. The new orange, I believe, is from the Seville family though I cannot recall its name. It was small and we ate it peel and all. Not real sweet and it stayed with you for hours. The home owner told me it is very good for marmalade and liquor.

As always Sandi Newman was a gracious host and my companion, Jane Marchand, was a welcomed passenger for the scenic ride. A tall Americano from Starbucks along with a sausage/egg breakfast sandwich and Jane’s bag of pumpkin bread helped fuel the positive energy.

This weekend we will again traverse 95 South to US 17. Our destination is a small family grove, just a bit further down the road from our first stop last week–it’s at 477 U.S. Hwy. 17 South in San Mateo. As always your presence is welcomed and the Tahoe has more than enough room to fill. Please contact me with any questions.


Gleaning: Update

I received this message from Sandi Newman, gleaning coordinator of North East Florida. If you follow this blog you know I reached out to her via her website Society of St. Andrews a few months ago to assist in gleaning the farms/orchards of Florida. She contacted me earlier this week to note the following:

Greetings Gleaners!
We have citrus to harvest this Saturday morning in Mandarin. We’ll meet around 8:30 to pick and distribute to agencies across Jacksonville. We’ve gleaned this grove before and they have delicious fruit that is much appreciated by the shelters, pantries and other agencies we serve and those individuals that they feed.
Respond to this e-mail and I will send the address and directions to the gleaning site.
Thanks for your faithful support of the Gleaning Network!

I am awaiting her confirmation of location and directions on how to get there. If you can join me let’s meet up for an early morning cup of coffee.

For some additional information on Sandi and the organization see this article from