Thursday, February 2, 2012

Grapefruit In My Bike Lane, 2012 Edition


The grapefruit IMBL, 2012 edition, an OSG tradition!

Last year we had this Boxes of Grapefruit IMBL, and like the passage of sands through the hourglass, once again, the pickers have cleaned the trees of the delicious yellow orbs, and packed them up for forklifting and shipping off to a grocery store near you.


I didn't actually eat one of these, since I have plenty of my own, but they are probably the same flavorful, juicy Marsh grapefruits we have, a yellow variety that grows well here despite our hot dry summers, and to me is what real grapefruit tastes like.




I paused near this pile on my bicycle, and breathed deep. The scent of a box of fresh-picked grapefruit recalls to my mind the intense perfume of this street back in spring, when the trees were dense with white blossoms, and their sweet smell made my mind wander into some kind of spaced-out reverie. The yellow orbs have a subtle and sharp smell all their own, which only stays for a few hours after they are picked, and then dulls as the most volatile oils evaporate. It's the smell that most reminds me of winter in Phoenix.

Winter breakfast in Arcadia: from tree to bowl in 12 seconds

15 comments:

  1. No more grapefruit if you moved to PDX. Do you have a tree of your own? I'm jealous.

    Is that an orchard, or is it a public park with fruit trees? Or is it someone's yard? It looks like it's open, mown and has pathways- and I see another biker in the background.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. cycler, these come from someone's yard. Many of these properties were citrus orchards before they became residential, and builders left many of the citrus trees in place. Cared for, some are 60 years old, which is on the senile end of the lifespan for typical grapefruit trees, but these are still going strong. Yes, we do have one, which produced the lovely and yummy fruit in the bottom photo.

      Delete
  2. Yum. I had no idea grapefruit grew in Pheonix. Thanks for my lesson of the day.

    ReplyDelete
  3. Those grapefruit look fantastic.....

    -Trevor

    ReplyDelete
  4. Are those sour or sweet? I'm a big fan of red grapefruit, haven't had yellow ones in forever.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Dog Friendly Dallas, they are possessed of a strong and distinctive grapefruit character. The white pithy rindy parts are sour and full of vitamins, while the pips are juicy and sweet, so you can somewhat control how sour the experience is based on how you eat them. In the photo, I sliced mine in half and used the grapefruit spoon to remove mainly the sweet juicy parts, although when out in the yard doing work, sometimes I just peel and eat, which is much more sour, but also a perfect experience of "local" for me.

      Delete
  5. Pallets of grapefruit in the street!
    Amazing.
    Is it because they clog the street sweepers?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I think the owners may get some payment for the fruit, but I believe mainly they do this to "clean up" the trees, to avoid having the fruit fall in the yard, and also because many people in the area are possessed with an obsession for "roof rats", which is apparently some sort of cross between an enormous voracious rodent and a vampire, to listen to some stories about them. Popular conversation has armies of them roaming freely at night, mainly, well, up on the roof, but I myself have only ever seen two in more than twenty years, one live and running down the street, and the other quite dead.

      Delete
  6. That makes me hungry to look at! Pretty cool...

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You could ride around the neighborhood and eat your fill this time of year. Some people sell bags of them for 25 cents on the honor system, others are just glad if you pick a few and eat them.

      Delete
  7. JRA - I live just southwest of the Arcadia area, all of my neighbors have grapefruit trees, but we don't. This means (1) I don't have to deal with a messy yard, and (2) we have PLENTY of grapefruit to eat!

    Oh, and we don't have ANY problem with roof rats. We have about nine feral cats my wife insists I feed, water, and pet. Every once in a while they leave a furry "present" on the porch; I guess in appreciation.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. BluesCat you may be onto something, as our neighborhood "kitty" is roughly the size of a small mountain lion, and appears to be well fed, and very confident.

      Delete
  8. I did not know there was a grapefruit scene in Arizona, very cool. The scene of freshly picked fruit is spectacular.

    In other fruit news, last week there was a sack of pomegranates that had fallen of a truck and smashed in the bicycle lane. From a distance it looked as if a large animal had been dismembered and spread around and I was twitching all over before I got close enough to work out what had happened.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Chafed, the early settlers came here thinking that the combination of the river (for water) and the year-round sunshine would yield great agricultural bounty. It does yield some, but the summer heat is pretty harsh on outdoor workers (and bicyclists), and only a small pct of us actually thrive in it, I think. Sorry to hear of the pomegranate casualty. :)

      Delete

Please feel free to comment here, almost anything goes, except for obvious spam or blatantly illegal or objectionable material. Spammers may be subject to public ridicule, scorn, or outright shaming, and the companies represented in spam shall earn disrepute and ire for each occurrence.