New & NowFruit

Why You Might Have a Hard Time Finding Local Peaches This Year

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Very sad news for Northeastern peaches, peach farmers, and peach pies this year: The arctic blast of the weekend of February 14 didn't send shivers only down your spine—it also decimated the buds on peach trees, which were, thanks to weeks of peculiarly mild weather, coming up prematurely. A cruel bait and switch!

The damages span from New Jersey to Massachusetts, with one farmer at Lyman Orchards in Connecticut telling the New York Times that he was expecting $400,000 in losses.

13 Ways to Enjoy Stone Fruit
13 Ways to Enjoy Stone Fruit

On a bright-but-still-kind-of-dim side, other summer fruits—like blueberries and even stone fruit like nectarines and plums—are having a fine summer. And, as Grub Street reports, the spring weather has been kind to apples and pears—"fall fruits that, by necessity or not, orchards now say they plan to promote 'pretty heavily'." Almost time for an early apple pie?

Looking farther into the future, this year's peach shortage means next year's peach-a-poolaza: According to the Times, "the dearth of peaches this year means that trees will have many more places for buds in 2017—as long as the current dry spell doesn’t worsen and winter doesn’t bring another debacle." Keep your fingers crossed!

For now, support local farmers by buying the produce you can find. Here are some recipes to start with:

Nectarine Slump

Nectarine Slump by Amanda Hesser

Plum Tart

Plum Tart by Amanda Hesser

Blueberry Schlumpf

Blueberry Schlumpf by Marian Bull

Rice Pudding with Sesame Crumble and Blueberries

Rice Pudding with Sesame Crumble and Blueberries by Sarah Jampel

Blueberry Ice Cream

Blueberry Ice Cream by Merrill Stubbs

Apricot-Oat Crumb Bars

Apricot-Oat Crumb Bars by Kendra Vaculin

Brooke Dojny's Blueberry Snack Cake with Toasted Pecan Topping

Brooke Dojny's Blueberry Snack Cake with Toasted Pecan To... by Genius Recipes

Tomato, Nectarine & Mozzarella Salad

Tomato, Nectarine & Mozzarella Salad by sweet enough

Or fast-forward a bit and help support the sale of the early fall crops:

Celery Risotto with Asian Pear and Shiso

Celery Risotto with Asian Pear and Shiso by gingerroot

Truly Scrumptious Apple Pie

Truly Scrumptious Apple Pie by mrslarkin

How are the peaches in your neck of the woods? Give us the peach 411 in the comments.

Tags: Summer, Food Biz, Farmers Markets, Farms