Thursday, April 9, 2009

Strawberries

It's finally that time of year again, when the strawberry farms open their fields to all us pickers!
We headed to Plant City on probably the last cool day we will have for quite awhile. The temp was 70 degrees. Perfect weather for bringing in the berries.

Before we started we sat down to a great picnic lunch of apple butter and pb sandwiches.

Here's Grammy showing us the proper way to partake of a Teddy Gram. She makes them look soooo good. She's also a computer geek and likes a good adventure!

Superman and Urban Girl (sporting her Country Girl cap) washing up after lunch.

Farm Girl and School Girl hanging around, ready to get this show started. Farm Girl and her younger sister (the Little Chef) come for the all you can eat strawberries and horses.


The fields... Not as good as they looked last year due to nematodes, but there are still strawberries out there!



The chickadees eating strawberry twizzlers and being sisters. Do they count as strawberries?


Now we're getting to some work. (sorry about the hand) Picking all those delicious berries!



Oh, here I am taking a break. Keeping count of the quarts and making sure everyone is working!


The Little Chef enjoying the berries..............

She really makes them look good. Remember, "God made dirt and it don't hurt!"
We picked 24 quarts of berries which equal 4 flats. It took about 2 hours of the adults working. Superman is the best at picking! Although this year he and Urban Girl were a little busy having rotten berry fights! The weather being nice made it so much easier. The little chickadees were busy talking with the farmer, picking enough to fill their tummies and spending time with new colt.
We also hit my favorite new spot! The drive thru produce market. I got a case of vine ripe tomatoes and a 1/2 jalapenos. Salsa anyone? We ended up picking up a couple more flats of berries. The price was outstanding.........and now I know why.
We started picking organic last year. Strawberries are the #1 fruit to eat organic (the are sprayed with you name it), so we decided to save a bit more from groceries and take the plunge. A flat of org. last season were $9 and the sprayed variety were apx $7-$13 a flat depending on the type. So for $2 more I get a healthier product with minimal pest control that is done naturally.
This year when we went to my "secret market" we could pick up a flat for $5! Well, when Grammy got home and started processing....she found that about 1/2 of her flat was bad. I found that the berries didn't taste as good as the you pick organics. So we've decided to just pick them from now on to get a more quality product.
This brings me up to today. I've 2 flats of jam to make, 1 flat of syrup, 2 to freeze and a lot to eat!
What do you make with Strawberries? Please share.... I'd really like some tips!
I'll be taking a bit of a break the next couple of days. Spending time with my family , cooking and celebrating the wonderful gift that was given to me and all of mankind. The Resurrection of my Lord and Savior.
Blessings,
julie

2 comments:

Anonymous said...

mmmmmmmmmmmmm looks yummy!!! :o)

sarah

Anonymous said...

Hi Honey,
I enjoyed the berry picking, as always,and the picnic was an added bonus!! Love, Mom xo