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What it takes to bring in the pine nut harvest

Pine nuts as we now them! Some 2010 harvest season notes. "Thanksgiving is over and there are a few more weeks until pine nut season ends. The chaos is behind us. Our products are packaged. The next part of our lives nears, which is the life and events in Missouri start to shape into view. We are moving into another season."

The Medicine

I took the pinyon as purpose, because it was a species that lived where there were few nutrients, little water, extreme temperatures, yet - out of next to nothing- other than sun, the tree made a complete protein food for all the birds and mammals of the range. The pinyon tree is a symbol of the wonder I have for all of creation and the complete blessing we have in our exsistence. Sitting quietly, I prayed for all of creation and began my journey We have certain rules with our businessOne is that if we take from a species, we have have the obligation to protect and propagate that species. Another rule is that before we take, we give prayers and part of the prayer must be a gift backy with the pinyon trees.

Over the course of the summer, we were on the ground in Nevada, New Mexico, Utah and Colorado.

This year, as we drove through remote areas in the Southwest, I could see land where I knew pinyon trees should be. Some of the lands had juniper stands that were 30 -50 years old, without a single pinon tree. I promised to plant pinon seeds this year. I am going to ask all of my clients to place 10 pinyon seeds in the ground - regardless of where they live, because we simply don't know how things will change.

Oddly enough, the place I gave my thanks was called Coyote Springs. It is way off any pavement and one could see the coyote scat all about. After my prayers, I felt the Coyote medicine follow me and thought, "what have I done?" I would never deny the medicine or the blessing it brings. I hope my heart is strong enough to carry the blessing of what is sure to be a challenging Coyote Medicine is about stopping people from acting out of habit. Coyote is the karmatic joke we play upon ourselves . It is the medicine to help me find laughter, when life backfires as I track up a path in the wrong direction. The karma coyote has come to call for me this year.

The Mechanics

George and Penny Frazier work in two different ecosystems with wild harvested products. Each year in the last days of September they close down their Missouri Organic Wild Crops farm and head west for the pine nut harvest.vest year. It is not a good harvest George and we have had to reinvent our approach to harvesting. .Like other smaill businesses, the Fraziers are working to do more with less. Being so far from the wild harvested pine nuts has in years passed created extensive logistical challanges.

In 2010 the Frazier's purchased a 1 ton diesel van with the intentions of hauling up to 8,000 lbs of pine nuts to various outlets in the U.S. The van was a comparativily low milage commercial vehicle, with an extensive power supply for working in remote locations. It was a simple case of , "you win some, you lose some."

From the 2010 Harvest log - by Goods From The Woods

Small business growth decision. Do our own trucking and have better control over pine nut environment while transporting.

Purchase used 1 ton truck expecting to spend some money for overhaul. Budget $4,500.00.

Pre-trip Mechanical Inspection

Ford Motor Company Dealership- take it to an expert for complete systems check:

$1900.00 Transmission Work and general mechanical maintenance

$600.00 Local Front End work, tires and second inspection

$185.00 Registration

Raise Budget to $6,500.00

Springfield MO

Overhead, batter dead - new specialty battery


Popular Bluff

Battery Drain, no power for lights, overnight

Sepula, OK

Alternator power glitch, drained system. Here great and wonderful assistance rendered.

$850 with hoses, parts New Radiator Alternator repair and electrical repair

Here I hung out with a 13 year old young man, Dakota. Totally enjoyed talking to this thoughtful person. We talked humanity, nature, purpose, reason, very cool young fellow and we exchanged ideas. James gave up his afternoon with D. to help us and tore into our alternator. James is a perm culture sort of fellow, who raised up his youngsters to be thoughtful and looked at us to say, "I am not leaving till the job is done." No one, no one will every talk poorly of folks from Oklahoma to us. These people are the real human beings, this is what it means to be right with the maker.

Throw out budget

McLean Texas

Explosive blow out - service call on Interstate


$150.00 Purchase AAA

Thank you Sherriff

Santa Rosa New Mexico

Still trying to understand mechanics of vehicle

Bolt sheered in Alternator

Grants NM

Transmission tail housing disenigrates - drive train just hanging on by thread.

$160.00 Miscommunication with mechanic truck gets towed

We rent a truck

Chile Arizona

George's back goes out - as in really bad! He can't move his legs more than a few inches and the people ask us, where the walker, George works his heart up and keeps on his will.

Only one room at the Best Western - the handicap space. We are okay with that!

Arizona -

I cry of sheer frustration

An email comes in out of the blue, document the destruction of pinyon trees in UT. I wipe off my tears, okay. That is my sign, pick up and keep going -that coyote is trying to chew off my leg.:

Ely Nevada =

Two days later, I share pine nuts with the creators of Ely's town square. I lay them at the feet of a woman who represents the seasons and depended upon the earth for life. It is a special ritual I am thankful, above all else.

Monday October 11

We find a wonderful, skillful, healing chiropractor for George.

Tuesday October 12

George is still moving very slow and in great pain. I find the strength to lift 50 lb bags of pine nuts into our packing machine, order start to go out.

Somehow, I gave my blessing - a place called Coyote Springs. It seems like Coyote Medicine travels with us , in a one ton truck. That one ton truck would be a low mileage (comparative)ambulance, with all the bells, whistles, lights and sirens. So, we are pine nut 911 - which given the short fall in the harvest, and the passion of pinon nut lovers, fits right in with the 2010 season.

Coyotee medicine is to teach us not to take ourselves too seriously and roll with unforeseen difficulties, that ineviatablily must manifest into blessings. most difficmost difficult thing this year is our shelling machine, as we had lots and lots of people wanting to get 1,000 lbs and the free pine nut sheller. We don't have enough nuts to for those folks and need to sit on our shellers for another year. (Could this be Coyotee as well?)

It is time for the road, in our one ton, coyotee medicine blessed ambulance - fasten the seat belt and pack those nuts.

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