Relative Something

*this* John W. Hays' take on things and experiences

Posts Tagged ‘picking raspberries

Berries Galore

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When the fruit matures on all the wild raspberry bushes around our property, you can’t pick fast enough to keep up with the supply. It becomes a full-time job for about a week or so.

Too bad neither of us are able to give it that kind of attention.

Cyndie does a more than adequate job to collect a reasonable amount.

Last night the berries were turned into a few miniature pies and a batch of homemade pop-tarts.

I’m going to be picking tiny seeds from my teeth on a regular basis for a week or two based on her ambitious efforts to put the berries to good use.

One of my strong favorites is spreading her black-cap jam over cream cheese spread on a good piece of heavy grain toasted bread.

It’s a taste and texture extravaganza!

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Written by johnwhays

July 7, 2017 at 6:00 am

Pickin’ Time

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Today is Independence Day in the U.S. I’m not sure whether there is added significance about the holiday this year, but it feels more complicated than usual with the turmoil over the bizarre turn our national government has taken, starting early in the Presidential campaign season, then through the change of administration and beyond, and all the while, compounded by the apparent ongoing meddling of foreign nations.

Did someone say “Russia?” Cough, cough.

Are we still an independent country? “One nation, under multinational corporations, indivisible…”

Regardless, we will be celebrating the day by mowing grass, composting manure, and picking raspberries. We returned from the lake yesterday afternoon, despite the gorgeous conditions beckoning us to stay. There was just too much work to be done at home.

Unfortunately, more than gets done in one day, but what a difference a day can make. I’m confident I will feel just fine by the time I throw in the towel tonight and head in for a shower and some dinner.

We took a little reconnaissance walk around the property last evening and found horses and chickens in good order. Most noteworthy was the amount of progress visible in the raspberry bushes compared to how they looked when we left on Friday.

Without delay, Cyndie got a bowl and started collecting berries. Soon, the chickens arrived to join her. It appears she will have some added competition this year on picking raspberries.

Another new addition to our landscape is bursting open like 4th of July fireworks! The first of the many colors of lilies at the top of our driveway are in full bloom.

It was a nice treat welcoming us home.

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Written by johnwhays

July 4, 2017 at 6:00 am

Domesticating Wild

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A number of our close advisors have provided insights on what we could do to tame the many wild raspberry patches that thrive on our land. Last weekend we finally made a first pass through the bramble that exists across the driveway from the house.

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In the four previous years since we moved here, we have simply harvested berries from wherever they appear. Some years the bounty was greater than we could keep up with and other years it has seemed a bit off. The hot spots tended to travel from one zone to another in any given season.

Navigating the tangle of thorns to reach fruit in the center of the patches was often difficult and hazardous. Since we never planted any of these wild raspberry bushes to start with, it doesn’t feel like we are risking too much to take a crack at cutting them back in hopes of encouraging some more orderly growth.

There’s no reason to think new patches wouldn’t just sprout up again if we accidentally destroy a current one. That’s the way they got here in the first place, thanks to the birds and nature’s way of doing things.

It seems realistic to me to expect that the trimming we have done may interfere a bit with the potential volume of this summer’s berry crop. Long term though, we think we will be cultivating better conditions for the plants. The ultimate result we are hoping for is improved berry production and a more enjoyable process of picking them.

Raspberry jam, anyone?

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Written by johnwhays

April 12, 2017 at 6:00 am