Friday, June 3, 2011


That's what Ava calls them and I think the description fits.

 For the next couple of weeks, I'll be furiously picking strawberries, trying to preserve as much of their summer sweetness as possible.

Last year, I picked and put up eleven gallons of Junebearers before my fingers fell off and I had to turn the patch over to the neighborhood kids.

This year, it's a jungle out there!  This is just one corner of my strawberry jungle.

 It goes all the way to the top of the hill (on the side of the cistern).  I really let them go, thinking that I would just dig up enough runners to start a new patch on FLAT GROUND and start all over again with a more wisely placed plot of berries.  It's hard to pick on a hillside!  And I can't till here to maintain the rows.

How's that for organic?

I can't say enough good things about these Sparkle - Junebearers.  They are unstoppable.  This patch has a lot of quackgrass in it and has had no attention at all for nearly two years.  They just have a will to live and produce strawberries.  Lots of them!  Sparkle is very disease resistant too. 

Ava's a big girl now, almost four.  But she still begs me to pick the berries for her while she parks and eats them.
"Please Mom, don't send me into the Strawberry Jungle.
I don't know if I can find my way back out again!"

I've been tossing the bad ones at the rooster to distract him.  Somewhere I read that the best way to tame a rooster is to bribe him with treats.  They say he won't consider you a challenger then.  So far so good!

Scram, chickens!  None for you!
Picking strawberries is the best part of starting off the summer.  We really enjoy them while they last.

Good times!  :)
These two gallons I decided to core, toss with a little sugar syrup and initially froze them on a cookie sheet so that I could bag them up.  We'll enjoy them on oatmeal or in smoothies later on.  I think it was my grandma who told me that a little sugar syrup would prevent them from getting freezer burn.

Speaking of beauties, check out these wonderful blue Love-in-a-Mist that volunteered in my garden this year.  I don't remember seeing them last year.  I think they came in a packet of mixed seed I planted previously.  I will be saving the seed!  I've picked off the lighter/whiter blooms to hopefully encourage them to carry on this true blue.

It's funny, my mom gave me some white Love-in-a-Mist a couple of years ago and it has aggressively popped up everywhere in my flower garden since.  I finally learned this year that I just have to pull them up before they go to seed.  The pods are really interesting too, so it took me awhile to figure this out.

 On a side note to any of my blogging buddies who are also on Blogger -- They seem to have been having some technical difficulties for over a week now.  I've tried to leave comments for many of you, but unless you have the Name/URL or Anonymous option, it won't let me.  The Google Account and OpenID options won't work for me at all.  I don't know about the others.


  1. The strawberries look wonderful! I love strawberries. You have quite a patch going there.

  2. Followed ya over from The Easy Garden. And I gotta say I'm SUPER jealous of your strawberry patch!!! They look amazing. There is NOTHING better than right out of the patch June strawberries. Good to know about the Sparkle variety Ill have to keep that in mind when I get my patch going.

    Have you thought about making it a U-Pick option? Would be an easy way to generate some extra $ once you've got all you can pick.

    Keep up the great work I really enjoy your blog.

  3. Thanks Debbie and Jared!

    You know, I did toss around the idea of doing a small U-pick or maybe even just selling the extras roadside from our home. I've got to save some runners and get the patch moved to a flat piece of ground though. Right now, even the kids get tired of picking them on this hillside! Thanks for stopping by. :)