Tuesday, April 19, 2022

Poor Man's Fertilizer


You'll never believe it but we had about three inches of snow last night.  I think I may be ready to move my entire operation to Florida.

Seriously though.  I've read that snow is considered a "poor man's fertilizer" and wondered why.  

Here's what I found:

An old wives tale says that snow is the poor man's fertilizer.  This is true because snow contains the nutrient nitrogen.  The snow lies as a blanket on the ground and slowly percolates through the soft spring soil.  Snow delivers about two to ten pounds of nitrogen per acre per year from the atmosphere to the soil.  This is not a huge amount but is more beneficial than rain because of the slow release and little amount of runoff. (Source: https://www.landscapearchitectureboston.com/spring-snow-the-poor-mans-fertilizer/)


When snow fall, it captures the ambient nitrogen in the air and preserves it until it melts.  Once it does begin to melt, that nitrogen leeches down into the soil in your yard.  This means that seasonal snowmelt can actually provide your lawn with an early dose of fertilizer to help it rally for spring. (Source: https://www.sublawn.com/understanding-effects-snow-your-lawn/)

Who knew?

So I guess we can look on the bright side when we have an unexpected spring snow!

Saturday, March 19, 2022



Please remember that Fitzgerald's Family Farm is not on the maple tour this year!

Monday, March 14, 2022

Fitzgerald's Family Farm's Big Changes...God's Country Upland Preserve and Giving Up The Maple Syrup Business

 We came back from vacation and were fighting to get ready for maple season.  In the week before vacation Fitz had gone to the Great American Outdoor Show in Harrisburg, PA for a venture that he started three years ago - God's Country Upland Preserve - an upland bird hunting preserve here in Potter County.

The calls were rolling in for hunts and we were having mountains of stress in trying to figure out how we were going to make this work. When we decided we had to make a choice.  Bird hunting or maple.  

Bird hunting is much more financially sound and definitely physically less demanding than tapping maple trees, boiling sap, etc... and we aren't getting any younger.  It is the obvious choice. 

So we decided to give up our maple business.  First we decided that we would do it just for the year, but then we decided to permanently leave the business.


The decision is a great relief.

Although we are listed on the Potter-Tioga Maple Weekend tour, we won't be participating.  We'll put a sign at the end of the road and block the driveway.  

Red Horse Grill, who would have been serving at our sugar house, has moved right down the road to Sons of Dunn's sugar house.  You won't miss them...   Go to breakfast at Brydonson Farm and then come back and go to lunch at Son's of Dunn.  A perfect weekend.     

We'll miss the people we've met over the years but are happy to move on to a new chapter.  

Wish us luck!

Wednesday, March 3, 2021

17th Annual Potter-Tioga Maple Weekend March 20-21, 2021

Be sure to come and see us at Fitzgerald's Family Farm for the Maple Weekend on March 20th-21st, 10 a.m. - 4 p.m. Eric Delong's Red Horse Grill will be set up and selling breakfast and lunch with maple inspired breakfast tacos or burritos, cheesesteaks, burgers, fries, and more!
Click on the link HERE for a map and more information about participating sugar houses over the Maple Weekend.

Wednesday, January 6, 2021

Winter Wonderland

It has been so long since I posted!  The end of the year craziness took over and for some reason I just didn't want to take away those luscious tomatoes from the top of my feed.  

But now winter has come and set down her foot.  It's time to dream of beautiful sunny days and fresh vegetables.  The seed catalogs are rolling in to help me plan for a beautiful summer garden.  Those that garden understand when I say, "this year it will be perfect!" 

In the meantime, I try to get out every day and move.  Because as someone said to me.  "Motion is lotion," and it keeps this body going!  

Enjoy some photos of my winter walk.  It is beautiful!


Thursday, August 20, 2020

Peaches and Tomatoes...

 Oh boy,  the peaches are coming on strong and the tomatoes are getting going.  Process, process, process!

The tomatoes start with lots of beautiful varieties of cherry and grape tomatoes.  They are oh so delicious, but everyone waits for that big red meaty tomato that you can put on a slice of bread with some mayonnaise and salt.  Yum!

After the nice meaty tomatoes comes the romas and the san marzano tomatoes just begging to be made into delicious spaghetti sauce and salsa.  

Peach trees love the high tunnel and reward me with lots of wonderful juicy peaches.  I don't spray and these are not freestone peaches so I cut off all the best parts (checking for little buggies - you know the joke - "What's worse than finding a worm in your apple?  Finding half a worm in your apple!) and then freeze the chunks.  The chickens get the peach parts that don't go in the freezer and from them they make delicious eggs for us. It's a win-win!

I'm also harvesting corn and basil (frozen pesto!) and grating and freezing zucchini for future zucchini bread.

  It's a busy season!

Sunday, August 2, 2020

Getting Pickled, Blueberries, and More

It's all about preserving the harvest these days.  I've pickled, frozen, and made jam.  I have yet to dehydrate, but it's coming!

My favorite pickles are bread and butter pickles.  Not too sweet and not too tart.  

There's a nearby U-pick blueberry patch nearby and I was able to pick six and a half pounds of blueberries in no time.  The bushes were bending over because they were so loaded with ripe berries!

I froze a bunch in vacuum packing and made a few jars of yummy blueberry jam with the rest.  

On the drive out to the blueberry patch I saw this little cutie by the road...

We were burning some brush and apparently one of our cats, Thug (so named because he used to be quite the bully), decided to get a little too close to the fire!

Silly cat!