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N1959 Kroncke Road
Poynette, WI 53955

Take Hwy 51 North from Madison, go straight onto Hwy 22, turn east (right) onto Hwy 60 almost immediately. Drive 2 miles and go North (left) onto Kroncke Road. We're just over a mile on the left-hand side.

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(608) 635-4780

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Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Week 6 of Kids in the Garden

I think once you get behind, it seems like it takes awhile to catch up.  Well – Week 7 of Kids in the Garden is just hours away and I’m finally getting to post the pictures/notes from Week 6.


That being said, all three of my girls were in a wedding this past weekend…so that’s my excuse.


Anyway – back to week 6.  We had a small group this week but we still had a lot of fun!

First – we checked the rain gauge and saw that we had 2.1-inches of rain since the last week.

Next – it was out to the sunflowers to measure their growth – 54”, 58” and 61”.

On the walk back the kids and moms were able to enjoy some delicious raspberries.  The patch is slowly starting to ripen.  It will definitely be ready for pick your own when we open the week of August 15th!

Then we headed to the back garden to see how the baby tomatoes were coming along.  We managed to find a few ripe ones that the kids were able to try during our snack.  2 liked them, 1 kind of liked them, and 2 did not like them.

We also checked out the cucumbers, summer squash, melons, potatoes, swiss chard, beets, carrots, lettuce and kale. 

The kids helped us pick some beets, carrots and onions to use in our recipe for the day.

After the kids washed their hands it was time to try the first snack –

Raw Beet and Carrot Salad

4 or 5 medium beets, peeled

1 small onion, peeled

2 medium carrots, peeled


Shred in food processor.


Toss with:

1/4 cup olive oil

1/4 cup apple cider vinegar

1/2 tsp dry mustard




Add minced:





It made a beautiful salad.  1 of the kids really liked it (I think he had at least 3 helpings), 4 kind of liked it and 1 did not like it.

Diane also brought some picked cauliflower that she had prepared ahead of time for the kids to try.

Refrigerator Cauliflower Pickles

Makes 1 quart


For the brine:

2 cups water

1 cup white vinegar

1 T plain salt

2 heads of fresh dill

1/2 tsp celery seed

1/2 tsp mustard seed


Cauliflower – cut into bit size pieces.  You can also add other vegetables – cucumbers, carrots, onions, kohlrabi – use your imagination and have fun with it!

Place 1 head of dill in the bottom of a clean quart jar.  Fill with cauliflower and add another head of dill on top.

In a medium saucepan, bring water, vinegar and salt to a boil, stirring until the salt dissolves.  Remove from heat.  Pour into jar.  Brine should completely cover cauliflower.  Allow to cool, then refrigerate.  Read to eat in 3 days.


1 LOVED the pickled cauliflower (Cedi), 1 kind of liked it and 4 did not like it.


After our snack the kids fed the left leaves and skins from the veggies to the goats.

Then we had to check out our jungle gym beans and north gardens of pumpkins, raspberries, and blueberries (everyone loved the blueberries).

Monday, July 29, 2013

Bob Lapacek of Lapacek’s Loft releases pigeons at the orchard

We were at a beautiful family wedding this past weekend and while I was talking to Jared’s Uncle Bob I realized that I posted pigeon release pictures on facebook but I didn’t share them with my blog followers!  So sorry for the delay everyone!pigeons

photo taken by Karmen Linder of Karmen Linder Photography

IMG_7499During the first weekend of Apple Blossom Days, Bob came to the orchard to release his homing pigeons.  Homing pigeons is a new hobby of Bob’s and he has over 100 of them.  He races them with a club and last season one of his pigeons averaged 70 mph!IMG_7501Before he released the pigeons Bob happily answered questions for the crowd.  IMG_7507IMG_7508And then he released them!IMG_7509-001IMG_7511It’s really cool to see them all take off at once.IMG_7512The pigeons circle around the area they are released to find their bearings.  IMG_7513-002

Once they know where they are, they head on home.  There’s a microchip on their leg so Bob can see how long it took them to get from their release point to their home. 


At the wedding this past weekend Bob released the Pigeons – it was pretty neat!

I’m hoping Bob will come to the orchard this fall and release the pigeons again!  If you would like Bob to release pigeons at any of your events, give me a call and I can get you in touch with him!

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Week 5 of Kids in the Garden

I realize that week 6 of Kids in the Garden is later today and I have yet to share the blog post from the last week!  So sorry about that.  I’m not sure where the time has gone!


And last week was a super special week.  Chef Matt from the wonderful Monty’s Blue Plate Diner came visit us.  He made us two special treats using produce that the kids help us grow, take care of and pick!

Week 4 of Kids in the Garden at Lapacek's OrchardHis first treat for us was nice refreshing, blueberry lemonade.  It was perfect for the super hot day that we were ‘enjoying’.  Earlier that morning, my girls and I had picked the berries from our patch.  Cheff Matt came with a container full of freshly squeezed lemons.  Week 4 of Kids in the Garden at Lapacek's OrchardAfter he blended the berries, a little lemonade, and some sugar together he strained the mix into the container of lemon juice.  With a few tests by the Chef he found the perfect combination of juiced lemons, blueberries and sugar!Week 4 of Kids in the Garden at Lapacek's Orchard

Baby Pip decided she didn’t want to nap during the program this time and she enjoyed a refreshing glass of blueberry lemonade.

18 kids liked the Blueberry Lemonade, 4 not so much

Next up – pesto!

Week 4 of Kids in the Garden at Lapacek's OrchardChef Matt had the kids pick a bunch of basil and mint from our herb garden.  I’m not sure of his exact recipe for pesto but it looked pretty simple.Week 4 of Kids in the Garden at Lapacek's OrchardHere it is all blended in the food processor.Week 4 of Kids in the Garden at Lapacek's Orchard

He served it on a toasted baguette with a piece of fresh, locally made mozarella.  Seriously – amazing!

12 kids liked the Pesto, 10 not so much, all the Moms LOVED both!

We all loved that Chef Matt came to visit and cook with the kids!  It was such a wonderful treat for all!Week 4 of Kids in the Garden at Lapacek's OrchardAfter we had our snacks it was time to measure the sunflowers.  We headed out in the heat and took three measurements – 36”, 39” and 48”.  They’re starting to get taller!Week 4 of Kids in the Garden at Lapacek's OrchardWe also wanted to check out how our kids vegetable garden was doing.  There are some baby tomatoes growing, some of the onions are getting close and the peas are nearing their ends.  Week 4 of Kids in the Garden at Lapacek's OrchardDid I mention that it was hot?  After our snack and checking out the gardens it was time for a water break!  Many of the kids came in swim suits and I think even the mom’s enjoyed a bit of a spray down.Week 4 of Kids in the Garden at Lapacek's OrchardIs there anything better than drinking nice cold, well water from the hose?  Tee Tee enjoyed it!Week 4 of Kids in the Garden at Lapacek's Orchard

And Georgia discovered one of our newest kittens!  We just got some for you all to enjoy this apple season.

With that – what a great day of Kids in the Garden!  Thank you Chef Matt and Monty’s Blue Plate Diner for helping make it so special!

Does this sound like fun?  Bring your kiddo’s to the orchard today from 2- 3:30 and enjoy some time in the gardens! ($5/kid)

Friday, July 19, 2013

Farmer’s Market at Monty’s Blue Plate Diner


montys advertising

Are you ready for Monty's first ever Farmers Market? Come join us this Sunday, July 21st and meet some of our local partners! Also, learn about the upcoming Farm Stop and Barley Pop event! Hope to see you there!

- Yelp Madison
- Locavore Roar
- Cedar Grove Cheese Inc.
- Burr Oak Gardens, LLC
- Lapacek's Orchard
- Sassy Cow Creamery
- Quince and Apple


We’ll be there with our apple cider donuts!

Thursday, July 11, 2013

Week 4 of Kids in the Garden

We had absolutely GORGEOUS weather for our fourth week of Kid’s in the Garden.  It was so nice that the humidity broke and we were able to enjoy our afternoon without being quite as uncomfortable as it had been on Monday and Tuesday.


We talked about Frank and Diane scouting for pests out in the orchard.  They had spotted aphids – which eat the leaves.  Frank thought that he may have to spray for that but later on their scouting journey they also saw lady bugs.  We asked the kids what lady bugs eat?  Aphids of course!  Since the ladybugs were there to take care of the aphids we didn’t have to spray for that.  Frank and Diane did find apple maggot which is a gross pest and we did have to spray for that.  Frank sprayed on Wednesday morning and there is a 12 hour re-entry time into the orchard after the spray is applied.  Although we would have been right at the end of that re-entry time we thought it was best to not go into the orchard.    We have plenty of gardens not in the orchard to look at though so we still had a great day at Kids in the Garden.


Week 4 of Kids in the Garden

We checked the rain gauge – 1” since the last week.  Such a different story than last summer – thank goodness!

The kids got to see how the back garden was doing.  The baby tomatoes, cucumbers, melons, summer squash, potatoes, swiss chard, beets, carrots, lettuce, kale, snap peas, snow peas, peas, and onions are all doing pretty well – some spots better than others.  We think the ‘bad spots’ are a result of too much water just ‘sitting’ and ruining the seeds.

Week 4 of Kids in the Garden Checking out Capri’s fairy garden – it seems to change weekly…those sneaky fairies.Week 4 of Kids in the Garden 

Diane put the kids to work and had them help with some of the hoeing in the back garden.  I know Cedi’s getting to be pretty good at it.

The kids collected fresh dill, onions, parsley, peas, snow peas, and snap peas to use for their fresh garden snack.Week 4 of Kids in the GardenHere’s Georgia helping to chop up the dill weed. Week 4 of Kids in the Garden I had to sneak this picture in – those sneaky fairies must have planted a corn seed one night – check out that stalk!Week 4 of Kids in the Garden 

Cedi and Georgia – patiently waiting to try their snack.Week 4 of Kids in the Garden To many of you this is going to sound completely ignorant but I never knew that you could eat peas raw.  They were quite tasty!Week 4 of Kids in the Garden 

The pasta salad was also a big hit!Week 4 of Kids in the Garden The mom’s even enjoyed it!Week 4 of Kids in the Garden Last item on the days’ agenda – poll time!  11 of the kids liked all three of the pea varieties, 3 kids liked two of the pea varieties, and 2 kids liked just one of the pea varieties.  All of the kids liked at least one type of pea – I would say that’s a success.

15 o the kids liked the dill dip, and just 1 did not.Week 4 of Kids in the Garden

Once our gardening class was done – it was time for a little play!  How cute is Kelin!?

Download the optional worksheet for today by clicking HERE.

Today’s Recipes

Dill Dip

1 c sour cream

1 c mayonnaise

1/4 c chopped onion

1 T minced parsley

1 T dill weed

3/4 tsp seasoned salt


Mix all together.  Serve with fresh vegetables


Fresh Vegetable Pasta Salad

Vegetables – chopped

   use whatever vegetables you have fresh and available.  In today’s salad you could find – peas, snow peas, snap peas, celery, kohlrabi, cauliflower, onions, and dried tomatoes.

Bow Tie Pasta – use any kind (or none)



1/4 c olive oil

1/2 c red wine vinaigrette

1 T. chopped basil, oregano, parsley, chives


or use bottled ranch or Italian

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Love Lock Wall at Lapacek’s Orchard

Pinterest can really be an orchard owner’s best friend sometimes…well…pretty much all the time other than the whole ‘time suck’ aspect of it.  Anyway – I digress.  Awhile back I was just scrolling through pinterest and images of a ‘love lock wall’ caught my eye.


{Photo from ‘Being Half the World Away’ blog post ‘not all those who wander are lost’}

After doing just a bit of research I have discovered that these ‘love lock walls’ can be found in romantic locations all over the world.  A couple either etches or writes with permanent marker (I’m thinking paint markers would work) on a lock, goes to the wall, puts their lock on it and throws away the key to signify everlasting love.

Immediately I thought – “If they do it in Paris, why not in Poynette?”

IMG_0099I showed Jared what I was thinking and he liked the idea and installed our very own ‘Love Lock Wall’.  IMG_0102At this moment there are just two ‘love locks’ on the wall – Jared and I and Frank and Diane’s but hopefully you are all as excited about this as I am and by the end of apple season we’ll have quite a collection that can grow each year.  IMG_0104I currently will be offering two different locks at the store.  I have quite a few of the ones seen above.  These will be for sale in the orchard this fall and can be engraved to personalize it for you.IMG_0107

I will also have a few of these padlocks with the longer shanks for sale but only a few.  I would love to strongly encourage you to find a padlock of your own you’d like to use.  I’ll be keeping my out for different styles as well.  I think the more different locks we have on the wall the cooler it would be.  There will be no charge if you bring your own padlock to add to the wall and I would be happy to take your key to use in some art projects I have in mind. 

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Burr Oak Gardens


Yesterday morning our ‘Kids in the Garden’ Group met over at Burr Oak Gardens to see how their CSA runs. 

Kate, one of the owners, was our tour guide for the day and she did a great job showing us many of the various tools that they use on their organic farm.  We also saw different vegetables they were growing and learned that their farm supports 250 families.  IMG_9779Diane even saw one that she wishes she has but doesn’t…yet…


After we saw the different tools and where they were used on the farm, Kate gave us a closer look at a pest on their farm – the potato bug.  We saw it in different stags of its life and she even showed us how to squish them.  The kids either loved it or were grossed out!

IMG_9854It wouldn’t be a true ‘Kids in the Garden’ session without a snack!  Kate let the kids into a portion of their strawberry patch to snack on a few delicious fresh berries.  It’s hard to not enjoy fresh strawberries!


And for the grand finale – Kate hopped onto a tractor and showed the kids how it helped weed between the corn rows. 

I know we all had a great time and learned a lot from Kate.  I’m pretty sure she enjoyed our group as well since we’re already invited back for next year! 

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