I remember when I was a kid in Virginia, we had mulberry trees and my brother and I would climb up in the trees and pick and eat the mulberries while we read books and our little sister slept for the afternoon. We’d wriggle into a ‘comfy’ spot in the cool shade where we could reach a cluster of berries while we read. Idyllic.
We went blueberry picking yesterday at Restoration Oaks Ranch in Gaviota, California – about halfway up the hill toward Solvang and it’s not find-able by the Garmin.
Big signs out on the 101 tell you that they have blueberries ready for picking. We planned to meet a group of folks – new to me group – but later found out they couldn’t make it. So, we took our pails and headed down the dirt road to find the spot between the red and yellow flags marking where we could pick.
The blueberry bushes were surrounded by this light mesh:
Which we both remarked would have been a good way for us to protect the koi in our pond in Colorado from the blue heron:
This guy stopped by for years and between him/her and the bears, we had no fish in no time. Netting would have helped but it might have frustrated the bears. Hard to know now.
I can see why bears would like blueberry picking too. No thorns, very sweet berries, and how darned easy!
I found the placing the bucket underneath each cluster and just running my hand gently down the branch pulled the berries off quickly without crushing any of them.
Our buckets slowly filled up. I think Mr. Man ate more of them than he put into his bucket, but that was probably appropriate. After all, it’s not like we have any way to freeze them or cook them or save them. So, might as well eat them right now.
There were lots of little kids running around with their buckets and their purple-blue mouths and sticky fingers too. The parents were trying to be diligent about collecting, but the kids were clearly there for the fun of it.
These fresh blueberries right off the bush were so warm and sweet – lovely! Now, if I just had a kitchen and could make blueberry muffins or a blueberry crumble!
Now that we don’t have to worry about regular bear visits, however, we’re considering planting a patch of blueberry bushes at our new house.
When we get a house, that is. After blueberry picking, we headed up the hill to see houses again. *sigh* what a mess. We’re getting closer to narrowing down the right location, right house, etc. but it’s a process and when we were finished with house hunting, I just wanted to curl up and sleep I was so exhausted and frustrated. More on that tomorrow!
P.S. You’ll notice I started a new category of posts. I was hesitating as I’ve not really settled on the fact that I live in California now, but I’m hoping that joining in on the local activities will help. I’ll probably be making more changes to the blog soon too, but will do them as I have the heart to. It’s all still a little lonely and scary for me yet, but it will get better.