“Over the years we have collected and nurtured many varieties of fruit,nut and vegetable plants.” says Sean McKeone about his orchards in North Hollow near Coudersport, Pennsylvania. That’s definitely bit of an understatement to describe his gardens considering our northerly climate and terrain.
Yes indeed, there were several kinds of grapes, gooseberries, cranberries, currants and saskatoon serviceberries. And, he has not just raspberries, but black ones, yellow ones and red ones. And, the many types of fruit and nut trees terrace the pathway up the steep hillside. Apples, pears, plums and paw paws grow in the patterned rows along the climb. There is even a hillside high tunnel, and a whole series of low tunnels with removable covers, a greenhouse or two and several rainwater collection barrels; all in place to support these exotic varieties. The view to behold came from the chestnut and hazelnut groves high atop the hill. And, yes even kiwi grows here in Potter County.
Necessity is the mother of all inventions, so the saying goes. And, here innovations were born of necessity. “You work with the land that you have.” says Sean. Seems to me that he has found a way to nurture enjoyment and self-reliance from the fruits of his labor in spite of the climate and terrain.
My quest today was blueberry plants — enough to start my own orchard. The unexpected bonus was the guided adventure tour through a hillside garden that resembled paradise. To share the excitement, visit McKeone Orchard & Nursery and learn more.