I am so excited to post that blueberry season has begun in Minnesota. There’s something simple and sacred about blueberries to me. They are small but certainly not understated. Â Picking them requires patience and an appreciation for the raw potential of a single plant to produce one of the planet’s healthiest foods. My favorite part is the first few minutes in the patch when everyone settles into quiet labor. You can only hear the tiny “plunk, plunk-plunk, plunk” of each berry hitting the bottom of the pail. Simple and sacred.
Here are 4 places for some blueberry adoration this weekend:
Blueberry Fields of Stillwater in Stillwater, roughly 18 miles from St. Paul offers early morning and early evening picking hours, dependent upon how quickly the berries ripen. Their website and phone line have up-to-date information on picking times. $3.10 per pound.
Covered Bridge Farm in Forest Lake 19 miles from St. Paul, had just opened on our visit last weekend. Hours and picking conditions are also updated online and by phone. I would recommend coming early as the field was full by 9 AM. The berries were top-notch! $3.00 per pound.
Bauer Berry Farm in Champlin, MN 29 miles from St. Paul offers morning picking from 8 AM to 11 AM on low-bush variety plants (3-4 feet tall), established in 1985. All of the 1500 bushes are pruned and maintained by hand with no chemical treatment. $3.10 per pound.Â http://www.bauerberry.com/
Blue Heaven Berry Farm in Stacy MN 39 miles from St. Paul just opened for picking this week. Picking times are on Tuesdays, Thursdays and weekends both AM and PM. Their website says to plan ahead as they will likely pick-out quickly this year! $3.00 per pound.
Grow your Own
Blueberries are a terrific addition to any patio or landscape. Â The garden partner and I have two low-bush varieties planted in containers on our patio. Â In spring, the bushes have small fragrant white blooms, the foliage is a pretty green all summer and a bright red in the fall. Â And who could forget, there are berries! Locavore’s can further support Minnesota food by purchasing a variety produced by the Â University of Minnesota’s breeding program. Â 6 cold-hearty varieties from the U are now available for our hot summers and sub-zero winters. Â Something not to be missed in the grow-your-own department: Â blueberries grow best in acidic soil, an organic supplement is necessary in most gardens to give them the right pH level.