One man’s mission bears fruit for all

By Shelia Huffman

Disciples Women from Central Christian Church in Dallas visited Ham Orchard Monday to enjoy, as the orchard boasts, “a sweet taste of a Texas summer.”

Photo by Shelia Huffman

Ham Orchard, just east of Terrell, Texas, was established in 1979 by Dale and Judy Ham. 

Dale planted his first orchard of 50 trees in 1979 on the original 23 acres. In 1980, he planted 450 more trees and continued to add fruit trees each year after. Today, more than 30 varieties of peaches are grown at the orchard, and people come from all throughout the state to purchase them, pick blackberries, dine on famous barbecue and shop the market store.

The women browsed the store purchasing peaches, jams, jellies, fruit butters, canned okra, beets, pickles and more. 

They lunched on the shaded, covered pavilion enjoying Eddie Deen’s famous Texas barbecue. Eddie has been the king of barbecue across the state (and country!) for years. 

Whether serving food at George W. Bush’s opening presidential ceremonies or feeding 12,000 at the Winter Olympics in Salt Lake City, Deen’s BBQ has been everywhere. After Hurricane Katrina, Eddie Deen’s BBQ was served to more than 100,000 evacuees and 65,000 power line workers. 

One of the all-time menu favorites is the peach pulled pork.

Following lunch, the two young members of the group headed to the berry patch to hand pick blackberries. Everyone returned to the store for dessert — peach ice cream or hand-made fudge.

The orchard is about an hour’s drive from Dallas and is open every day during the summer except Sunday. 

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