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!|
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.