Fruit-wise, Texas is best known for its juicy, ruby red grapefruit available every late winter and spring. When summer gets closer, everyone eagerly awaits peach season. It can be tricky for transplants to wrap their minds around this truth. parkercountypeachfestival.org. The real action, however, picks up that evening at 8, when the rodeo takes center stage, followed by a boot-scootin' dance at 9:30. Gillespie County's orchards have produced some of the nation's top peaches for generations with many operations being held in the same family for over 70 years. With tattered roadside stands selling peaches in every form, from pie and cobbler to jelly and yogurt, if you tire of one peach treat, you can just switch to another. Jamey Vogel says to a buddy, "Hey, when did you travel to Georgia to buy those peaches you're entering?" A Family AffairThe JAMboree is the social event of the year in Stonewall. Get daily tips and expert advice to help you take your cooking skills to the next level. Need tips on planning your peachy getaway? Sweet and tart medium to large fruit. Though Cooper Farms delivers peaches to grocers if there is a surplus, co-owner Elizabeth Johnson says “50 percent of our trafﬁ c is roadside,” a throwback to her parents’ ﬁrst marketing efforts. One more festival for the peach season is the Peach JAMboree & Rodeo, celebrated in Stonewall in mid-June. (He returned to complete his bachelor’s degree in 1972). Dates may be changed by the department providing 72 hours public notice on new closing dates and 24 hours public notice on new opening dates. That makes sense because the weekend is such a rip-roarin' good time. For further information call (727) 824-5305. That's why periods March to May and September to November are the best time to visit Texas.The reason is mostly mild and comfortable weather. Get the MagazineSave up to 62% off the cover price. The Soul of StonewallYou see, peaches are personal. The JAMboree has given the town a kickoff to peach season. Fresh or preserves. Photo: Tiffany Hofeldt, ind Carl Govan’s fresh-baked loaves of peach bread at Cooper Farms Country Store. This event features a Peach Queen contest, baking & salsa contests, a rodeo, and live performances as well! And seeing those perfectly plump spheres hanging on every tree branch makes you want to reach out and pluck a few. Roadside markets and orchards around Fredericksburg and Stonewall offer a great variety of delicious Gillespie County peaches. Photo: Tiffany Hofeldt, Summer looks pretty sweet in Texas’ top peach destinations—Gillespie, Stonewall, and Parker counties. Hye Market, a nearby historic destination for diners and imbibers, uses Vogel peaches in chef Matt Church’s fermented peach salsa, which he spreads on ciabatta for his pork belly sandwiches. Best time of year to visit . Some vegetables remain in season for months upon months. In contrast to many other parts of the country, hot summers sometimes bring an end rather than a beginning to the growing season. stonewalltexas.com/peach-jamboree. FLAMEPRINCE: Late ripening, extending the Texas freestone season well into August. A variety of crops can be planted, grown, and harvested more than once per year in many areas of Texas, making them available more or less year-round. As far back as the thirties, people were driving here to buy peaches.". There’s also a classic car show, a parade (above), tractor pulls, and live music. We get publicity from Austin and San Antonio; then people come to Gillespie County to buy our peaches. Inversely, when weather is cooler, the season gets a late start. Stonewall focuses on the fruit, of course, but the people here also work at coming together as a town. Carved out of Limestone County in 1850, Freestone County was named because of the quality of its soils. Taste is always the best indicator, so ask if you can have a sample if there aren’t any readily available. Then you would make a pie with grandma. Credit: Inside, ripened peaches share shelves with fresh vegetables, canned peach products, and jars of honey. Gary Hutton, orchard co-owner with brother Jimmy, favors the Malt Shop’s peach milkshake.
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