Robert has been working really hard this summer in case you have not figured that out. And so I decided to pick enough blueberries last evening to make him a blueberry pie. I dressed to cover my entire body so I was protected from the thorns and mosquitoes. Then I sprayed a healthy dose of Deet just to be sure and made the trek to the garden. I scouted around looking a for a good place to start harvesting and making note of the hornets nest in the ground at the end of row three or four. It is a big nest and would be difficult to miss, in my opinion.
I settled in and began my task immediately being targeted by a mosquito who could not resist my uncovered hands and fingers. Gloves are not helpful for harvesting blue berries, so I took the hit. Next I was buzzed by a Blue Jay who practically took my hat off! They think this is their private domain and humans are not allowed! The Jay spent the remainder time caw-cawing at me from a nearby tree.
A bit later the turkey hens and their poults came wandering along. They love the blueberry bushes. It seems the mothers use this as a training ground to teach the poults to fly–and they will fly onto the bushes knowing sweet rewards await. However, when they saw me with my big hat and other garb, they detoured into the woods to wait for me to leave. The sight of Robert would not have concerned them, but the turkeys are wary of anyone else. Also, turkey hens with poults are not quite as aggressive as the local Blue Jays and Crows. The turkeys are protective of their young. I picked on knowing I needed two full cups for a decent pie.
Next on the scene came deer. They stayed in the nearby thickets and blew at me. A blow is a kind of snort they give to let you know THEY KNOW you are present and not particularly welcomed. Still I picked on!
Just as I was reaching the amount of berries I desired, I heard a rustling and crashing sound in the distance. Did you ever read the Caldecott Award winning children’s story Blueberry Hill? It is about bears on Blueberry Hill. Okay, so this is Ploeger’s Garden and not Blueberry Hill, but I was taking no chances. I headed for the house with my harvest–pronto–to make a blueberry pie. This just might call for a scoop of organic, French Vanilla ice cream!
The point of this story? We have blueberries for CSA Members–only if you dare. Send an email or call me at 828-628-1601, if you are interested.