Sarah Jordan loves to help out at her family’s farm located in Rutland, Massachusetts. Sarah recently joined her grandmother, uncle, aunt, and cousins to pick blueberries for delivery to farm stands and farmers’ markets throughout the area. The berries are picked fresh in the morning, cleaned and then delivered to markets.
This year’s local blueberry crop came a little bit earlier than usual due to a mild spring and are now ripe for the picking. For a fun family outing, there are 67 pick-your-own blueberry farms plus hundreds of farmers’ markets and roadside stands from which to choose.
Native to North America, blueberries, or Vaccinium corymbosum, are perennial flowering plants in the same family as cranberries. Varieties of blueberries more commonly grown in Massachusetts are Berkley, Bluecrop, Coville and Earliblue. Massachusetts is number two in the U.S. for wild blueberry production and rank 17th for high bush (cultivated) blueberries.
Blueberries are a great source of antioxidants that may prevent diseases such as cancer. In addition, this small but mighty fruit is an excellent source of vitamin C, iron, manganese and fiber. An extremely versatile berry, these fruits can be used in many recipes such as pies, muffins, jams, jellies and smoothies. They are definitely worth the purple tongue you’ll get afterwards from eating them!
For more information and directions to Massachusetts' blueberry farms, farmers' markets, pick-your-own berry farms, and roadside produce stands, visit http://www.mass.gov/agr/massgrown/map.htm.
2015 DAR Agricultural Calendar: March posted on Apr 23
Girard’s Sugarhouse in Simsbury, CT. The sugarhouse was built in 1887 and produces around 250-300 gallons of syrup annually. Photo by Michael Girard March’s contest winner was Michael Girard who photographed his family’s sugarhouse in Health. Michael Girard has been a sugarmaker since 1961 when he …Continue Reading 2015 DAR Agricultural Calendar: March
2015 DAR Agricultural Calendar: February posted on Feb 25
February’s contest winner was Amanda Bettle, who photographed sheep at The Natural Resources Trust of Easton. This photo features Dog, a former 4-H show animal and sole male sheep among the nine ewes in the Natural Resources Trust of Easton (NRT) flock. It is the mission …Continue Reading 2015 DAR Agricultural Calendar: February
2015 DAR Agricultural Calendar: January posted on Jan 26
January’s contest winner was Renee Finnegan, who photographed a pensive Highland cow at Oak Meadows Farm & Garden in Rutland. Glenn and Mary Kauppila have been farming 100 acres of land in Rutland for approximately 15 years. With the help of their three adult children, they …Continue Reading 2015 DAR Agricultural Calendar: January