Friday, July 17, 2015

It is Berry Picking Time!

 In just a little over one week we went strawberry, honeyberry, blueberry, raspberry and cherry picking. We are so blessed to have all those different types available and all but the strawberries we were able to get free for the picking.
 A week ago Thursday we took around a 45 minute drive to go over to a U-pick strawberry patch. That was fun picking. Since we had to pay per bucket I did limit the amount we picked otherwise we would have been happy to pick there for hours. They let Megan (because she was under 10) pick a lb or so (they give the little kids their own special basket) for free - they also encouraged us to go ahead and eat while we picked so we gladly did!
 Then we drove about 2 miles from the strawberry place to a Honey Berry U-pick place. The lady that owned it had told us about it the week before and said that she had a pick and share deal. We could pick for free if we wanted- we would just need to let her have 1/2 the berries that we picked. That seemed like a good deal to me so we decided to make a day of it and do both the strawberries and honey berries the same day since it was a bit of a drive. We pack a lunch to take along.
 Honey berries grow on a busy and are the color of blueberries but have a very unique shape.
 They weren't super fast to pick but we still go a fair amount.
 They reminded us a little of blueberries in flavor but quite a bit tarter. Somewhat like a wild grape. They worked well in muffins but I don't really care to eat them plain.
The strawberries however were very delicious for eating plain!

   We went blueberry picking with friends on Saturday but that was a disappointment as they seem to have all frosted out or something like that. The patch we normally go to on state land had hardly any berries at all. We did get enough to put in muffins the next day along with some honey berries.

 This Thursday we went over to my parents to pick raspberries and  (tart)cherries. On our way their it started to rain - actually pour. I did lighten up some after we got their so we decided to go out and pick. We got probably a gallon and a half and then the rain came pouring down again and we were drenched (it was just Mara and I left out their at that time - the other kids had reached the melting point earlier) and so we gave it up for the day but hope to get back there again soon. Aaron and Megan had picked about a quart of cherries which I made into juice which I think I will make into Jelly.

   I did make both strawberry and honeyberry jelly which are quite delicious.

   We are still waiting for the Juneberries, elderberries and highbush cranberries to ripen and then we hope to pick them. I love berry picking!

   It is so fun to watch our freezer start to fill up again as we put the containers of berries in it. The canning jars are beginning to fill as well. We are so blessed!

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