Albion Man Hopes Irene Doesn’t Ruin His Peaches 

A lot of people are worried about the wallop that hurricane Irene might bring.That includes a man from Albion who makes his living growing a fruit you might not expect to find around these parts. At first glance, The Locust Grove Farm looks like any other farm in Maine. There’s raspberries, blueberries, livestock, and also peaches.Gordon Kenyon is the owner of the Locust Grove Farm. “Actually I had these things on site since, let’s see I planted the first ones in 1984 or 1985.”Gordon spent brief stints living in the western & southern United States. “And I got used to peaches,” he said. “So I decided to try peaches here. And I put some in and they sort of took care of themselves. I didn’t do to much in the way of pruning. I had all these other things going on.”About eight years ago, at the urging of a friend, Gordon planted more peach trees. Then a few more. Now you’ll find more than 650 peach trees here with 14 different varieties. “Because the pests of the major peach raising areas haven’t gotten here, I don’t have to spray.”How is it possible to grow a fruit that’s traditionally grown in much warmer climates here in Albion, Maine? Gordon says it’s location, location, location. “We’re located on top of a hill. and there’s basically very few obstructions to the air,” he says. “Colder air is denser than warmer air so it tends to go from high places to low places.”That means the temperature is as much as 13 degrees warmer in the spot where his peach trees are than it is just a short distance away. Gordon does have one major concern. Hurricane Irene. “This could be a disaster because these peaches right now are just perfectly ripe,” he says, “and the idea of a strong wind right now will put them all on the ground. If the wind starts whipping these branches around the peaches are just going to fly.”All Gordon can do is hope irene has other plans and doesn’t decide to pay a visit central Maine.The Locust Grove Farm is located 379 Quaker Hill Road in Albion. To place an order for peaches you can call Gordon at 437-4585.