By Elspeth Mizner
ERIE, Pa. (Erie News Now) – September and October often mean the return of apple crops and local farmer’s and produce stands are getting ready to have them filled with fresh apples.
John Mason, the President of Mason Farms has been busy getting ready for a new season of crops.
Mason said after a dry summer, he’s hopeful for more rain this autumn to help with his grape crop. “I’ve never irrigated as much as much as I have this year and I’ve been doing this for about 40-50 years. I’ve had years where we irrigated a lot and then we had a break, you get a rain storm and then you get a break for a week or so. This year we irrigated from the first of June to this last batch of rain, over the last week to week and a half is the first time we haven’t been irrigating every day”, said Mason.
After fruits and vegetables are either picked or purchased, they can be found on Mason Farms Produce Stands like on Old French Road, West Lake Road or Peninsula Drive.”
Besides grapes, Mason makes sure his produce stands are filled with everything from string beans, to corn, tomatoes and apples. “We got cider this week, yesterday, so we got cider now and that will put us through Christmas and we’ve had apples for at least a month and apples we have plenty of them this time of year”, said Mason.
Although Mason doesn’t harvest the apples himself, he said it’s important that they support local farmers to get the produce for their stands. “Anytime we can buy anything local that we don’t have enough of, we’ve found some thing we don’t grow because someone else grows them better than we do, we try to specialize what we do well. We specialize in a lot of tomatoes, peppers, grapes raspberries, we grow a lot of strawberries, we specialize in them things and we have bought a lot of our apples off local farmers and stuff like that”, said Mason.
Mason said that besides harvesting crops, they keep busy with their PumpkinTown at their location on Peninsula Drive in the fall. Mason said its set to open in the next few weeks.