Lipe Orchards roadside stand is located on Illinois Street in Carbondale, Illinois. The orchard has been in the family for generations, in fact, the 4th generation runs the orchard and the 5th helps out.
Rose Lipe was on hand with her daughter Laura and granddaughter Molly and grandson Jared on a Saturday in mid-August. Rose sat perched on a stool as she assisted her family. “This is my therapy,” she said about the business she has been involved with for decades.
At the stand they were selling the tail end of the peach crop. Peaches are just one of the items that buyers could find at this fresh market stand. Lipe orchard produces peaches, nectarines, pears and apples plus an array of vegetables herbs and more. For those wanting to enjoy southern Illinois produce, they are open tentatively until November.
Lipe Orchards has deep roots in southern Illinois. “My husband’s grandfather started the business in the 1880’s. He planted the trees, back then everyone had a home orchard. People had asparagus, chickens and eggs and more. ”
Rose explained that orchards would take their produce to a nearby railway station to load it on a train to be shipped to Chicago. “The train stopped at 4:00 in the afternoon. Farmers would bring in their produce, they even shipped cream.”
Springfield Illinois has received much of its early fruit from southern Illinois for years. In fact Humphrey’s Market located at 1821 South 15th Street got their start when they had an over abundance of peaches one year. Hope Humphrey-Walker shared, “My grandparents (Elzie and Leota) started in 1932. Grandpa hauled produce, picking up at orchards and such and was a distributor.”
It was during a trip to pick up peaches that prompted the beginning of this long-held family business. Henry who is Hope’s father said, “My mother and father bought peaches from an orchard in Southern Illinois. “
When the market they were taking them to didn’t want the peaches, Hope’s mother started selling them in front of her home. A natural salesman, soon the family market was in business.
Fruit from orchards like Lipe Orchards has supplied central and northern Illinois with produce for years. It was a Cobden, Illinois man that developed the first refrigerated car that changed fruit transport.
For more information about Lipe Orchards, log onto http://www.lipeorchards.com.