Blog Archives

Earth Day at Rancho Bella Vista

Hi everybody,
I hope all of you had the chance to observe Earth Day in some special way.  Here at Rancho Bella Vista it was a gorgeously sunny day and we enjoyed every minute of it outside that we possibly could.   Things are humming along here at the farm and we are making some improvements to the grounds surrounding the house and farm store. Today we put in another Peach tree as companion to the one we grew from seed, to help cross pollinate by next year  and  3 fig trees.  We also, did a lot of clipping and mowing and weeding,etc.  All in all, was a great day.
Jerry has been doing great with the chile pepper seedlings, we now have about 3000 + plants coming along well. About 21 varieties of peppers and veggies, so far including 2 new ones; and we have some goji berry seeds coming up which we will try to raise into bushes later in the year.
Seems like  it’s going to be a very busy year, like always. 
Also, we have moved the strawberries out of the Herb Garden area and will be putting them into a small field of their own because they need to have space to spread out with “runners” which eventually create new plants. To think that all these branched out from the original 10 plants I bought and started 3 years ago!  We now will have about 200 plants to put into the new Strawberry Field. And we’re hoping to have a few nice berries this year, but may still have to purchase a few dozen to make this year’s Berrily Hot jam .
That’s all for now,
Carol A.K.A. (Mom)

Update on crazy spring weather, seedling planting and events

Hi all, Jerry here.

I have received several emails asking how our peppers are doing and what kind of crop we anticipate. I guess many of our customers remember that last year we had a naughty frost which froze all of our peach crop in southern Illinois. I am gald to say that southern Illinois peaches will be doing great this year. However we continue to once again have a strange winter. In southern Illinois we had more snow than our usual few inches but we had a severe ice storm that did a lot of damage to our electrical system, trees and fences and the ice was so heavy that it took down one of my greenhouses.

We also continue to have rain, rain and more rain. Usually we begin transplanting our peppers into the field by May 10. We had plans to get into the field today, May 22, but your guess it, more rain. Overall I anticipate a good crop of peppers although they will probably come two or three weeks later. We usually begin picking around the last part of June however this year it may be around the first or second week of July. But don’t get discouraged. Rain is good for the peppers and we are certain to get plenty of darn hot southern Illinois sun in July and August which will greatly contribute to bringing you those Darn Hot Peppers.

Stay tune to this BLOG and I will keep you posted on what is happening down here at Rancho Bella Vista.

So, Thanks for asking. I look forward to seeing many of you at the Farmers Markets and Food Expos.

Mucho Amor,

Jerry