We’ve Come So Far!

Maisie Jane's first store

Sometimes it’s great to remember how it all began. Did you know that Maisie Jane’s was created as a Future Farmers of America (FFA) project when Maisie was just seventeen in her mom’s kitchen? Yup! Maisie grew up in a family that had been growing almonds for three generations. So she heard a lot of […]

Posted on January 23rd, 2020

Walnut Trees in Winter and David Hockney

David Hockney painting, East Yorkshire Walnut Trees

In winter, it sometimes seems like there is little to notice, and little to write about when it comes to nuts. But that is always when I look to famous artists—and the artist in me—for inspiration. Because there IS something I love about nut trees in winter: it’s the only time when you can plainly […]

Posted on January 16th, 2020

Words of Wisdom from the Family Farm

Maisie Jane and Her Children

Life on the farm is such a great teacher for learning to live well in harmony with the seasons and the abundance of nature. It teaches so many great lessons for how to live life! I thought I’d share a variety of quotes and words of wisdom that put it all in perspective: “To everything […]

Posted on September 17th, 2019

It’s Almond Shaking Season!

Shaking the Almond Trees

It’s the most wonderful time of the year— almond shaking season when we knock the “l” from the almonds. (We say “ah-mond” here in Chico, with “ah” pronounced like “Sam.”) Between mid-August and October, 80% of the world’s almonds are shaken from the trees in California. Some say the season actually begins in Chico. And […]

Posted on September 5th, 2019

Home in the Almond Grove

Hurtado Family

I came across a country rock song I never heard before recently by a band named Cracker that maybe some of you might know. Cracker was formed by singer-songwriter David Lowery (of Camper Van Beethoven fame) and guitarist Johnny Hickman. On their most recent album, “Berkeley to Bakersfield,” is a bittersweet song called “The Almond […]

Posted on August 8th, 2019

How Almond Growers Help the Local Economy

Almonds Cracking Open in July and August

Did you know that 80% of the world’s almonds are grown right here in California? California also supplies 100% of the almonds sold in the United States. In 2016 that amounted to 2.15 billion pounds of nut meat (shelled nuts) valued at $5.2 billion in worth and $21 billion in economic revenue when products made […]

Posted on June 11th, 2019

Almond Farming is a Family Affair

Hurtado Family

Did you know that according to the 2012 USDA Agricultural Census, there are around 6,800 almond farms in California? Almost 75% of those farms are just 100 acres or less—most are under 50 acres. And even though California produces 100% of the U.S. almond supply and more than 70% of the almonds produced worldwide, 91% […]

Posted on April 4th, 2019

Almond Tree in Blossom by Pierre Bonnard

The Almond Tree by Pierre Bonnard

The Almond Trees are in blossom! It’s such a glorious time of year. And every year as I write this blog my thoughts turn to the artists who loved almond blossoms just as much. In the late winter of 1941, Post-Impressionist French painter Pierre Bonnard wrote to his friend Henri Matisse: “Today I saw the […]

Posted on March 21st, 2019

The Artistry of Almond Blossom Season

Gathering Almond Blossoms by John W. Waterhouse

It’s Bloom season here in Chico. It’s been raining more this year than most, but our bees did find a break in the weather to help pollinate the trees. Time will tell how well they were able to do. In the meantime, it is always glorious to see the almond trees burst into bloom. Locals […]

Posted on March 5th, 2019

“Still Life and Blossoming Almond Trees” by Diego Rivera

Still Life and Blossoming Almond Trees

It is not unusual to find beautiful paintings and photographs of almond trees in blossom. Revered artists like Vincent Van Gogh and Pierre Bonnard have been captivated by the beauty of bloom season as have lesser known artists wherever almond trees can be found. What is far less usual, however, is to find a painting that […]

Posted on February 14th, 2019