Thursday, April 10, 2014

When Life Gives You Lemons



Lemon trees grew on our property in Ecuador. We harvested them year round, for lemon trees can have blossoms, baby fruit and mature fruit all at the same time. During some seasons more lemons grew than at others. We loved having fresh lemons all the time (and avocados, too.) Sometimes lemons would fall to the ground and get chewed up in the lawnmower. What a lovely scent filled the air.

A couple of years ago we discovered a fruit grower who grew lemons here in Canada. Tim thought it would be a wonderful thing to have our own lemon tree. We chose a south-facing spot against a short stone wall. Tim built a wooden shelter - just a wall, really, to protect the lemon tree from the cold wind. Last spring we planted the tree, watered, fertilized it and watched the bees buzzing around the blossoms. Tiny green lemons formed. Would they have the chance to ripen before the cold? No. But our fruit grower expert told us that we would be picking lemons in April. Really?

Tim draped the tree with an old string of outdoor Christmas lights wired to a thermostat. We covered the tree with two layers of an agricultural fabric in September. Many mornings I looked out the kitchen window to see a colorful glow coming from the wrapped lemon tree. The lights come on when the temperature hits freezing and their heat protects the tree. 

Last week Tim removed one layer of fabric. Yesterday I was in the yard and noticed a tear in the remaining layer. I peeked in then went for my camera.
 

Lemons! All the cosseting resulted in lots of lemons. This sneak peek was all I could get through the little tear. I'm dreaming of fresh lemonade, lemon meringue pie, guacamole, lemon bars and more. Tim thinks we should have a big celebration or at least a little ceremony. I think a lemon-themed party might be fun.

What do you like to make with lemons? 

27 comments:

hostess of the humble bungalow said...

Oh that's wonderful!
The fellow who sold us our dwarf apple trees grows lemons and limes on the Saanich Penninsula...perhaps he is the same grower who told your Tim about lemons. I bet they taste better than store bought too.
Well done!

Andrea Dawn said...

I can feel your joy and am delighted with your sneak peek. I look forward to lemon themed posts down the road.

Vee said...

A party with three lemons? Or are there more? What fun to have your reward for all that TLC.

WendyBee said...

No. Way. Icantbelieveit! I was bracing myself when I saw the title to this post, thinking something bad had happened to you, and you were making the best of it....Whew!! That is sooooo cool! Well, I'd be tempted to make lemon bars (that's my favorite...), but quicker would be lemonade. Woohoo!

podso said...

That is so neat! I'm sure you are going to come up with all kinds of new lemon recipes! And suddenly I have a Peter Paul and Mary song running through my head … Lemon Tree ...

ellen b. said...

Wow! Well done. When we lived in Southern California my parents and a lot of our friends had lemon trees so we could always have them fresh off the trees. I like lemons mostly in drinks and in salad dressings.

Cheryl said...

I absolutely love lemon pie, preferably without the meringue, believe it or not! The bakery in a local grocery store sells a lemon crumb pie that is the bomb! My favorite thing to make myself is lemon bars. (In fact, I have a recipe post in the works.)

What a delightful thing to grow your own lemons! I think a lemon party sounds like a fine way to celebrate!

Jill said...

How exciting for you! I love lemons but just have access to the grocery store ones. I look forward to your lemon posts. :)

Mrs.Rabe said...

Awesome! What a lucky gal! Lemons!

Deanna

materfamilias said...

Magic! What a glorious colour that fruit is, so unexpected in our climate.

cucki said...

:)
Sweet x

Madonna/aka/Ms Lemon of Make Mine Lemon said...

How wonderful and how clever using lights and cloth. I am a total lemon head.

Madonna
MakeMineLemon

Elizabethd said...

What a good idea. We had lemon trees in France, but I kept them in a conservatory. The joy of home grown lemons cannot be described!

Roses, Lace and Brocante said...

I couldn't live without a lemon tree Lorrie - it's a staple for me like parsley and mint!!!
Your story of wrapping your tree for protection from the cold makes me realise how lucky we are to live in our temperate climate!
A favourite in our house is Lemon Delicious pudding - it has a light sponge on top and a delicious velvety lemon sauce on the bottom - sooo yummy! I'll put the recipe up on my blog soon!

Jen @ Muddy Boot Dreams said...

I've heard of lemon trees growing out there, good for you. It's pretty amazing how we can slightly control the climate to trick Mother Nature.

Jen

Art and Sand said...

We don't have a lemon tree, but we do have friends with a myers lemon tree.

I just made wonderful lemon bars from some of their myers lemons - delicious. But, the do thought so too and ate most of the lemon bars.

Laura Ingalls Gunn said...

My friend Tracy just brought me a huge bag of lemons. First I zested all of the skins and froze the bits for future cooking and baking. Then I squeezed all the juice and froze that. Then I took the remaining bits and am in the process of making an all natural cleanser. It takes two weeks and will be ready on April 20th. So I will blog about the results.

My presentation went VERY well on Tuesday. Thank you again for all your help.

Ida said...

Wow that is so cool. I vote for Lemon Merengue Pie! Yum.

Pamela Gordon said...

That is really cool! How exciting to have grown your own lemons successfully. I'd definitely do some celebrating. I read an article recently on how healthy lemons are for us. I hope you share with us what you make with them. Have a great weekend Lorrie.

My Little Home and Garden said...

That is amazing, lemons growing in Canada. A celebration is definitely in order, Lorrie!

Anneliese said...

This is wonderful! We saw trees covered in similar fashion on our drive home from CA last week... we were wondering what kind of trees they were. I don't' think they need to cover them in California.. but maybe they were a fruit tree needing protection from birds.

Mary said...

How fabulous to have your very own lemons to pick - your TLC worked! I have half a one squeezed in hot water every morning - helps start the day and aids the digestion.

Happy weekend - when life gives you lemons make lemonade, or lemon meringue tart!
Hugs - Mary

Cristal @ Dapple Design said...

You should make lemon curd. And invite me to come eat it.

Storybook Woods said...

Ohh fresh lemons this neck of the woods is a real treat. Enjoy. It is the zest I get real excited about. I put it in everything, especially my olive oil/Dijon vinaigrette !!!Clarice

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Donna said...

Hooray!

aimee said...

I wonder if they would grow here if we did the same thing? How wonderful to have homegrown lemons:)
Blessings, Aimee