It’s that time of year – the time of free bounty. The other day it was a brown paper bag, a Monadnock Oil and Vinegar bag, hung on the front door of the shop. It was brimming with summer squash, tiny ripe eggplants and a green pepper. Yesterday two, 1/2 peck bags of apples showed up. Today it was garlic at the barn in a little gift bag on my saddle rack.
Food seems to is appearing for me so I thought it must be time to splurge on a new feeder and seed for the birds. The bears haven’t gone to hibernate yet but there is so much food in the forest I doubt they will bother my feeders, though I can’t count of the raccoons to leave them alone.
I saw pecks and 1/2 pecks at Mack’s Apples on Monday, and had wondered why fruit is measured in this arcane method. What to do but google it.
A peck is an imperial and United States customary unit of dry volume, equivalent to 2 gallons or 8 dry quarts or 16 dry pints (7.6 liters). Two pecks make a kenning (obsolete), and four pecks make a bushel. Although no longer frequently used, produce such as apples are still commonly sold by the peck.
In Scotland, the peck was used as a dry measure until the introduction of imperial units as a result of the Weights and Measures Act of 1824. The peck was equal to about 9 litres (1.98 Imp gal) (in the case of certain crops, such as wheat, peas, beans and meal) and about 13 litres (2.86 Imp gal) (in the case of barley, oats and malt). A firlot was equal to 4 pecks and the peck was equal to 4 lippies or forpets.
Firlots? Lippies?? Now to pick a peck of pickled peppers…