When I was in Sunday school as a kid my teacher one day told us that God always answers your prayers. God always says yes, no, or wait. Well, for the people of Portland praying for strawberries in May, God said wait. At last, the strawberry crop is ripe for the picking. Talk about independence from a "fruitless" existence! The apples from the CSA stopped pouring in weeks ago.
All the waiting has basically turned the U-Picks on Sauvie Island into a bit of a scene. Today I saw too many people in very nice outfits showing up with five gallon buckets. Sundresses and pretty white capris abounded. I sat there in my clothes that are meant for getting dirty...literally sitting in the dirt for three and a half hours. Picking the juicy bundles of early summer sunshine for a total of 7 1/2 pounds. The pretty clothes people walked about bending every so often to pluck a berry, commenting on how low the bushes were. They left with maybe a quart in their buckets. Strawberry picking is dirty work, as well as the rest of farming. Come prepared and reap the rewards!
I picked Hood Strawberries. A local favorite. These berries remind me of the field of wild strawberries across from my parents' house. Delicious and tiny. The only difference is they are bigger, but not by much. They are much smaller than the average berry you find in other varieties.
Seven and a half pounds of strawberries will keep me busy after my shower. Tonight I will make strawberry-rhubarb jam. I will tart freezing berries...hoping for a gallon to make treats throughout the year. The rest will be for us to eat in their most simple form throughout the week.
At the farm they mentioned blueberries and raspberries will be ready next week. This summer is moving right along. It looks like another batch of jam will be cranked out within a week or two!