From the category archives:

Virginia Foods

Virginia Pumpkin Growers

by Staff on October 10, 2014

Pumpkin CheesecakeThis is great news for Virginia.  CNN has reported that sales of pumpkins nationally has risen 34% just in the past 5 years.  Not coincidentally this is the same time frame since Starbucks introduced its pumpkin spice latte plus other pumpkin drinks and pastries.

A professor at Virginia Tech’s Agricultural  school says that the southwest portion of VA went from zero acres of pumpkins to over 4,000 acres of pumpkins just since 1999.  Virginia has its own Pumpkin Growers Association where you can locate further details on VA pumpkins as well.

It’s widely thought that Starbucks started the pumpkin craze, but many other businesses are hopping on the Pumpkin Wagon too.  You can get pumpkin doughnuts, pumpkin cheesecakes, and an assortment of pumpkin flavored beers.  Many states have extravagant Pumpkin Festivals that include pumpkin carving contests and other creative pumpkin games for the whole family.

I think it bears mentioning that a great deal of what people love about pumpkin flavored foods… is directly coming from the cloves, cinnamon, nutmeg and other spices that give those foods their distinctive flavors.  The pumpkin craze makes me wonder if there’s money to be made in pumpkin tofu … it needs some kind of flavoring, yes?

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Virginia’s 2014 Apple Crop

by Staff on October 2, 2014

Ginger Gold Apples in VirginiaWe may be heavy but don’t call us fat.  Can you guess what in Virginia weighs 180 million pounds?  If you answered ‘Virginia’s 2014 apple crop‘… you’d get a gold star.

It’s been a great year for Virginia’s famed apples.  Because our Central Virginia area sits primarily east of the Blue Ridge Mountains, our orchards benefit from rich soils plus protection from winds and extremely low temperatures that can cause frost.   This year the weather has been good to our apple growers and the crop looks wonderful.

There are more than 50 recognized apple orchards in the state and likely many other smaller operations/farms as well.

The Virginia Apple Growers Association based in Charlottesville has lots of information about our apples in their link HERE.   They say that an acre of apple trees could yield approximately 700 bushels of apples every season.  Different varieties of trees have varying yields from 2 to 8 bushels per tree.   And you know that if we’re talking about apples, we always need to give a nod to Virginia Gold apples, our favorite forever.

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Edible Landscapes in Virginia

by Staff September 22, 2014

For those who want to integrate themselves into the Virginia agricultural landscape, one fine way to accomplish that is by selecting plants, trees, flowers, and bushes that thrive in our climate … and are also edible.   It’s fun, it’s efficient, it makes sense. But often folks aren’t exactly sure which plants are edible or which plants [...]

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Charlottesville Hosts 2-Day Agriculture Fair

by Staff September 7, 2014

DAY 1: – Agriculture Celebration on Main St. in Charlottesville Friday, September 19, dinner time Charlottesville Historic Downtown Mall  On Friday Sept. 19th on Charlottesville’s Downtown Mall there will be a special food event.  Restaurants on the downtown mall have teamed with the Local Food Hub and the Albemarle Farm Bureau to provide special local [...]

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Belly Up to the Farm in Central VA

by Staff August 23, 2014

We write often about the innovative farmers and their products in Central VA.   Farmers seem to be producing almost everything from solar power to chicken lips these days!   We have lots of quality wineries and vineyards in our Charlottesville area,  and now several busy farms are raising hops for their own craft breweries. As small ‘craft’ breweries (sometimes [...]

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Farm Tour on Labor Day

by Staff August 20, 2014

Hey Central Virginia food lovers!   Save Labor Day, Sept. 1st, for a time to attend a FOOD FEST from the specialty farmers of Central VA.  More than a dozen farms will welcome you on your tour and you can sample treats from their herbs, organic foods, creameries, mushroom farms, apple cider farms and many other unique and [...]

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