Saturday, January 21, 2012

next….Citrus

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One big advantage of being in Florida is the availability of citrus. I have learned a couple new names. Valencia and Hamlin these are juice oranges.  They keep pretty well and are good to eat or juice.  I had never paid any attention, but I must have heard of the Honey-Belle.  It is a sweet orange, but does not keep well. Every one knows the Navel, It peels good and is good for juice or eating.

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There is a road side, honor system spot on Estes Road East of Eustis that sells the fresh fruit. Juice oranges are $5 half bushel honey belles, Navels and Tangelo’s $6 for half bushel.

pick1pick2pick3

96% of all citrus is picked by hand using wooden ladders and canvas sacks. The average Picker earns about $10 an hour. Since it is becoming hard to find pickers, they are experimenting with mechanical harvesters, they account for the 4%.

Citrus is a great fruit but it does not ripen once picked. Any orange that hits the ground stays there because it is damaged by rot or disease. Unlike apples that you can eat  from off the ground.

An Orange reaches a certain sweetness when it is still green, and can be picked for juice. The Orange blossom is a sweet smell, the orange tree will bloom with fruit still on the  tree. The smell carries for miles!

When I first came down I thought there were two harvests, but not so, only one a year.

I think the best juice is a combination of all the oranges.  You can imagine the amount of waste bi-product of the orange, some is incinerated and some processed for cattle food. In towns where they process the juice you can smell the peel,pulp and seeds, not as bad as the paper plants were at one time, but you can smell it.

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I am always amazed at the amount of oranges hauled to the plants.

I love tangerines, but they are not a BIG thing here in Florida. Saturday we walked to the local farmers market and one lady was selling her tangerines for a $1 a dozen.  Grapefruits were 5 for a dollar.

I believe the Texas Red Grapefruit is redder than the Florida reds, but I am not sure. Texas also has some great citrus.

We have a half bushel to juice now, probably tomorrow.

Thanks for coming by the log.

Nite Shipslog

PS: (Not bad logic)

I’d rather live with a good question than a bad answer.

—Aryeh Frimer

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1955 Volkswagen

1955 VW, the first car I ever did see that was not built in America.

7 comments:

shirl72 said...

Well looks like you are an authority on oranges now. Good
when you return home we will know
what kind to buy. They look good
and I can't believe the price.
We pay a dollar for a grapefruit.

We have had rain for three days
about to wash away. I need your
boat that was downstairs Oh well
maybe it will stop soon.

Shirl

Paula said...

There is nothing as good as a good orange. I sure didn't know they are used for cattle food.

TARYTERRE said...

Thanks for the tutorial on oranges. found out things I didn't know. I LOVE clementines, myself. But the smell of oranges is intoxicating and sweet.

Fred Alton said...

I love citrus of all kinds! Through experimenting and hybridizing they have better tasting oranges now than when I was a kid (I think). I used to love tangerines better than oranges because they were easier and less messy to peel and eat. Good report on one of Florida's major exports.

Robert Geiss said...

First image looks as if taken at our garden ;) Use lemon with my black tea.

A good taste for you all Sunday.

Jean said...

I'm like Paula I didn't know they were used in food for cattle. I love orange juice not much at eating the orange. We bought some at Sam's when we were over there a while back and they were dry. Feels like summer up here today I was wearing my shorts (around the house).Lol. Take care. Jean

I'm mostly known as 'MA' said...

Oranges are good for us. I love them. Strange to know that they are only harvested once a year though and we see them in the stores all the year round. Maybe they are coming from different places??? The prices here vary as to what kind you buy, but last week I saw a sign that read 10 for 10. That's a dollar an orange, thankfully I saw a different bunch with a bag of about 8 for $4 something. I bought those. I always think about orange juice as sunshine in a bottle and since we don't have much sun here, i drink some every day and try to eat oranges regularly.