The Winters Friends of the Library annual Fruit Tree Sale is held on the first Saturday in March at the parking lot on Railroad Avenue at Edwards Street. There are usually a large variety of trees for sale, all donated by Sierra Gold Nursery.
The sale starts at 9 a.m. (rain or shine) and lasts until all the trees are sold. Members of WFoL can get in at 8:30 a.m. There will be a membership table set up at the entrance where people can join on the day.
Some of the trees available often include almond, nectarine, prune, two varieties of apricot, three varieties of cherry, four varieties of peach, and two varieties of pear.
Why a Fruit Tree Sale?
Some may scratch their heads and wonder why a library group would be selling trees. The annual tree sale started over 14 years ago when WFoL president Jacqueline Avellar and her husband Tony traveled to Sierra Gold Nursery in Yuba City to purchase almond trees for their orchard just outside Winters. While there, the owner of the nursery mentioned that he donated trees to his children’s school for a fundraiser. Never missing an opportunity to find more ways to fund our mission, Jacqueline suggested that he donate trees to the Winters Friends of the Library. He eagerly complied.
When the tree sale became so popular Four Winds in Winters offered to donate citrus trees, which they did for many years.
Jacqueline was in charge the first two years. Then Tom Neely took over and took the organization of the sale to a new level. Jeff Ten Pas then took over from Neely and for several years was leader, continuing a high level of operation. Since 2017 tree sale coordinator Margaret Bailey, has continued to improve and refine the sale.
John Knabke, a local farmer, has been indispensable by picking up trees and sorting them at his ranch. We also have help from local farmers, pruning purchased trees. And the Master Gardeners set up a table to give advice and encouragement.
The Fruit Tree Sale is now one of the Winter’s Friends of the Library’s biggest fundraisers, raising $4000-$6000 every year. The money is used to support the local library in paying for materials, special programs, computers, repairs to furniture and upgrades to the library.