I have a front yard planted with super dwarf fruit trees to give a green fence, and three grape vines being trained to grow over a pergola to give shade and fruit. The peach has been producing for a few years IF the frost doesn’t get it which happened so we only got a few fruit. The apple trees finally put some fruit on and held them, I got a few. The quince has been fruiting for a few years, it puts on BIG YELLOW apple things, and I’ve had to explain, those are NOT apples, they are quince (I love quince jam). I don’t have a huge harvest, but it’s enough to enjoy some fresh fruit and I knew what was put on them (sprays or not).
There’s going to be a dip in temp so I spent morning plastic sheeting the screen house and moving container veggies in for the few days; then I get about another month of growing…. and this afternoon went to harvest the front yard. The red table grapes has been harvested for a few weeks and are nearly gone; the green table grapes turned out rock hard this year and it put on very few. The Concord grape vine is happy and it gave. I am about through harvesting a full cake pan off that and a car rolls by. I hear “she’s harvesting already” and they take off.
Less than ten minutes later, I’m getting off the step stool and up pulls a pickup truck and five adults and four kids get out. They start across my lawn with baskets and pails in hand and start looking at my trees! I say, “‘Excuse me”, to those descending on the quince, “but that’s a QUINCE and it’s nowhere near ripe yet.” Someone picks a couple of the green grapes and tries them and does, “Eww gross”, and spits.
The mother of this batch, starts in… “You don’t have any fruit?!?!?!?” Um no, I didn’t get much harvest as spring frosted a lot. I have a big cake pan full of concord grapes in hand, the last of the harvest.
“Oh OH NO! I need 10 bushels of Peaches, 15 bushels of apples, and 6 flats of grapes! How can you not have ANY!?!?!?!?!” She’s staring at the grapes I’m holding.
“What about the Farmer’s Market, their last weekend is this weekend? The (another state) peaches and (different state apples) looked really good last weekend.”
“Oh no no no. You always have LOTS in your yard, always. I just planned on coming over here!”
My DH has heard voices, and opened the front door. I hand him the grapes and make the gesture with my body blocking “close and lock door”. He does, stepping out of sight in house.
“What! Wait! Where are those going!”
“Into a pot dear, I’m making jelly tonight…”
“No, how dare you, please leave NOW. And I counted the quince. If any leave I’ll turn the picture of your truck sitting in front of my house over to the police. Go, now, please go.”
I called the non emergency dispatch number and left a note for the dispatcher so they have a heads up in case I have to call on these … people. My lawn when it’s fully mature might do 1/3 to 1/5th the amount she was looking for… I mostly got a good fresh taste this year. Just because you can SEE it doesn’t mean it’s yours for the picking… 0911-14
I’ve encountered several land entitlement pigs over the past 30 years of home ownership. Everything from kids walking right into the property to eat the cherries off the tree to hunters who sauntered into my pasture intent on shooting crows. More recently a neighbor decided he and his employees liked our driveway better than his own until told that was not acceptable. Anyone with a large piece of rural land can tell stories of hunters or people on motorcycles/ATVs trespassing to the point of breaking down fences, cutting fence wires, etc.
In case of such narcissistic entitlement, the only remedy is a spine of titanium to confront it head on and not back down from the guaranteed guilt trip that is sure to justify the behavior.