Plenty of peaches at Eckert's Orchard in central Kentucky

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Posted at 2:19 PM, Jul 26, 2021

VERSAILLES, Ky. (LEX 18) — The dog days of summer are here, but sometimes, the air conditioner isn't going to cut it.

You may need something sweet and refreshing. Maybe a popsicle, ice cream, or a nice, ripe peach.

You don't have to go south to Georgia to pick one. There are bushels of peaches ready to be picked just a short drive away.

Come summertime, Mondays are the few quiet days at Eckert's Orchard in Versailles.

But just like many other places, there was a stretch in the spring of 2020 where only employees could be on site.

As the orchard remained empty of customers due to the pandemic-related shutdown, Mother Nature struck a blow.

"When we were supposed to produce our first crop (of peaches), we lost them due to the frost we had in May," said Megan Fields, farm manager at Eckert's Orchard.

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The rebound in 2020 started with a lower capacity of customers, who Fields says were eager for some socially distanced sunshine.

"We have wide-open space. People feel safe here because we do have wide-open space. You can spread out with your families. We've got the playground for the kids to come and spread out and just rinse some of that fun energy off," said Fields.

This summer, the crops bounced back in a big way.

"There's about 100 peaches on that tree, on that branch right there, yes," said Fields. "We've got plenty for picking. We've got plenty for folks to come out and pick, and plenty for us to have in the store as well."

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There are also blackberries ripe for the picking, and soon, the apple crop will be ready.

"Our main goal is to feed folks and so we've got fresh fruit for people to come out and eat and take home and enjoy. And pies, and jams, and however they want to share with their friends and family," said Fields.