FREDERICKSBERG, Texas – It’s been said that April showers bring May flowers, but in our part of the world avoiding a late freeze means plenty of produce on the trees. Summertime in central Texas is synonymous with the fruits of labor that Travis Jenschke’s family has been farming for generations in Fredericksburg. His great grandfather emigrated from Germany to Frederiksberg in the 1860s, and his family has always been in the fields. Despite being at the ripe age of 73, Jenschke has never left the family farm and still works the fields.
“To me, I enjoy every minute of it and I like it,” said Jenschke. It could be the fact he doesn’t really have to harvest his bountiful blessings. He’s got all sorts of Texans lining up to do a little peach picking. “When I was a kid, I worked for my dad’s uncle and some neighbors picking peaches and they’d pay me 50 cents, 75 cents an hour to do that. And now, people come out here to pay me to pick peaches. That took me some time to get used to,” said Jenschke.
Making memories is what this experience is all about. First you have the thrill of seeking out the perfect peach. “It’s work, it’s fun, but you’re out here and you know, being out in the country, it – oh, it’s wonderful,” said Mary Jane Taberes, visitor to the orchard. But the best feeling is finally plucking a peach ripe for the picking. “When you grab the one from the tree, it’s that freshness, that taste. You just can’t substitute anything else,” said Taberes.
While getting to taste fresh fruit is the juiciest juncture for visitors, for Jenschke it’s all about family – seven generations of them making this piece of Texas the center of their lives.
“My wife and I, we get a little money every month. Not no great sum, but hell, this is what I want to do,” Jenschke said. “I mean, I don’t want to sit in a rocking chair. I don’t want to do that, and I don’t want to sit down all day. I want to get up early and stay late. As long as I can, that’s what I’ll keep doing.”