Blueberry Heaven!

valgor(4b, WI)July 29, 2014

Can't get any more organic than walking out in the woods and picking. What a patch, 13 quarts in 3 hours.

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berry_bob

dang !!!!!!!!!! wished we had them here

    Bookmark   July 29, 2014 at 9:25PM
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mrsg47(7)

Fabulous!!!!!

    Bookmark   July 29, 2014 at 9:47PM
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drew51 SE MI Z5b/6a

I have to find a wild patch!!! I have never seen them here.

    Bookmark   July 29, 2014 at 11:55PM
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alan haigh

Yesterday, after a long day of work, I had to pick mine to avoid losing them to the ground- during the season this chore need by done once every 3 days whether you feel like it or not. I do love blueberries, but sometimes the advantage of a fruit you can fill a bushel basket within a couple of minutes may seem more like heaven.

    Bookmark   July 30, 2014 at 5:26AM
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molex

That is a really tough problem to have Harvestman, a real First World Problem ;p

    Bookmark   July 30, 2014 at 12:36PM
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edweather(Zone 5a/b Central NY)

Those are extremely nice for wild. Did you have help? How do they taste? I found a large wild patch years ago. The bushes were numerous but very small berries and close to the ground. Took a whole day of back breaking work on my knees to get enough for a batch of jam. Taste was a bit bland, but nothing that 8 cups of sugar couldn't fix.

    Bookmark   July 30, 2014 at 7:53PM
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valgor(4b, WI)

Went back out tonight. 12 qts in 2 1/2 hrs. Between my wife and I and my parents we have taken around 80 qts from this patch and it keeps giving, though a day or two more and they will be over ripe.

Hman, if you can grow a blueberry the size of an apple let me know :)

edweather, that pic actually shows 19 qts, my wife picked the other 6 qts. They are bursting with flavor, a nice combination of sweet and tart. they are getting over ripe, so there are a few mushier ones. We pick every year and this is the best I have seen for last eleven, though the best patches like this are far and few between. At this spot you pick up a bush and they are hanging underneath like grapes, I caught myself giggling a few times. I will try to get a pic of that up soon. (not the giggling, the blueberries:)

    Bookmark   July 30, 2014 at 10:29PM
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ericwi

We had a pretty good blueberry harvest here in our yard, in Madison, WI, this year, about the same quantity as you found in the wild. But there is more effort and time involved-I have to keep them watered whenever there is a drought, and I have to keep them protected from the local rabbits over the winter months. I might get discouraged if I kept careful track of all the hours involved...

    Bookmark   July 30, 2014 at 10:57PM
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alan haigh

I am waiting for the breeders to come up with larger strains. The favorite in my little stand is Bonus- not sure if picking them fills the basket quicker but they actually are more highly flavored to my palate than the others I'm growing.

It used to take hundreds of years for humans to vastly change wild fruit, but I figure with modern breeding techniques we might have at least grape sized blueberries in my lifetime- and the clock is ticking on that one.

That would be nice, grape sized blueberries on a bunch. At least the breeders don't have to spend any time on eliminating seeds.

A slight genetic change that caused the fruit to ripen at the same time on a bush would, in itself, be extremely helpful. Especially if you had early to late varieties that did this.

    Bookmark   July 31, 2014 at 5:43AM
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oldfixer

Enough for the world's biggest pie.

    Bookmark   July 31, 2014 at 6:49AM
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franktank232(z5 WI)

Wait..how did you not get run out of the woods by a hungry black bear and her cubs? :)

No wild blueberries around here...need to go a good hour north. I have picked a lot of black caps, wild raspberries in the past.

    Bookmark   July 31, 2014 at 8:43AM
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bart1(6/7 Northern VA)

Frank - did you take that photo?

Amazing!!

    Bookmark   July 31, 2014 at 9:05AM
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franktank232(z5 WI)

No...but it is from Eau Claire, WI... which is about an hour north of here. There are bears in this area, but they keep pretty well hidden.

I think Valgor is over on the eastern part of the state, but i'm sure he has plenty of bear friends by him too :)

    Bookmark   July 31, 2014 at 10:47AM
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valgor(4b, WI)

oh yes, we have more than our share of bear. But they taste good too. Sadly we only draw a tag every ten years for our unit. The bear had been in the patch, but not recently. you could see where he was laying and rolling, but the berries on the edge of that were hanging over into the sunlight and were the best right there. I am about an hour north of Green Bay, and that's the closest directions anyone will get to my patch :)

    Bookmark   July 31, 2014 at 4:02PM
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bart1(6/7 Northern VA)

For the past two years, I came out to my fenced apple/pear orchard in the morning to find a big black bear laying on the ground and devouring my pears. He really liked the Asian ones.

When he finally noticed me, he was up and over the fence as quick and agile as a squirrel. I had no idea those big guys could move so fast!

    Bookmark   July 31, 2014 at 6:22PM
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franktank232(z5 WI)

Valgor-

My brother/nephew were just up fishing Rainy Lake (MN/Canada border) and they never bothered to look for berries...i told him i'm sure they are everywhere. The island they were fishing a reef near was called BLUEBERRY ISLAND... too interested in nonstop 20 inch+ walleyes...i guess its tough with the slot up there to catch eaters...everything is huge. They fished the Fox River this spring and just hammered huge walleyes (i think they all had fish over 7lbs)...it was bumper boats, but i guess they had a blast. Of course i have my own little boat anchors (3 kids) so fishing trips have been off the map for me, but that should change shortly i hope (growing up fast).

    Bookmark   July 31, 2014 at 6:51PM
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edweather(Zone 5a/b Central NY)

Two great berry years in a row here. Nice snow packed winters and good chill hours. Banner strawberries, raspberries, blackberries, blueberries, and apples.

    Bookmark   July 31, 2014 at 7:04PM
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valgor(4b, WI)

franktank, I got two of those anchors myself so I stay close to home to catch the walleye and get plenty of eaters, the occasional wallhanger too. But that's Jan. and Feb. Slot limit, that's what "sport fishing" does. Heck, what's the point of fishing if yer not gonna eat it? This time of year I have been killin the smallmouth. Limited out the last two times I've gone. My brother had a big bayliner we used to put out in Kewaunee for salmon. Sold it now, those days are gone. Now we are prepping for another elk hunt. Leaving for Colorado in 27 days!

    Bookmark   July 31, 2014 at 8:29PM
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Konrad___far_north(3..just outside of Edmonton)

This is really nice! I have yet to find a place.
Did you use a comb? If so, any experts out there,..which is best to use?

    Bookmark   July 31, 2014 at 9:20PM
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valgor(4b, WI)

berry rakes are illegal in Wisconsin because they defoliate the bushes and can ruin a patch for years. besides they make the berries soooooo dirty. I would rather pickem clean.

    Bookmark   July 31, 2014 at 9:45PM
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Konrad___far_north(3..just outside of Edmonton)

That makes sense!
Tonight I picked one Saskatoon bush,..close to 8 lb.

    Bookmark   August 1, 2014 at 1:20AM
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valgor(4b, WI)

Nice. I am unfamiliar with a Saskatoon. It looks like a cross between a huckleberry and a juneberry. What is their flavor?

    Bookmark   August 1, 2014 at 5:28AM
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Bradybb(wa8)

A Saskatoon is in the same Genus,Amelanchier,as the Juneberry and some varieties can be very sweet,with the seeds having a nutty,almond taste. Brady

    Bookmark   August 1, 2014 at 10:44AM
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glib(5.5)

do you all harvest by hand or use those handheld combs? any opinion about those?

    Bookmark   August 1, 2014 at 1:22PM
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valgor(4b, WI)

by hand, see above comments regarding berry rakes

    Bookmark   August 1, 2014 at 3:59PM
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ravenh2001

they call the tool a rake and after you rake a field of berries you prune to ground level. why would you worry about a few leaves?

    Bookmark   August 3, 2014 at 8:36AM
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alan haigh

I was expecting a Mainenite (Mainster?... Mainion?) to comment. I assumed all those acres of lowbush BB's are rake harvested but that they rebound with vigor.

I didn't know that plants are then mowed, however. That seems unbelievable. How would they have time to gather enough energy to generate all new wood and still produce fruit the following year?

    Bookmark   August 3, 2014 at 9:12AM
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ericwi

My understanding is that Maine lowbush blueberry beds are allowed to lie fallow for an entire season, after they are mowed down in the fall.

    Bookmark   August 3, 2014 at 9:23AM
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ravenh2001

After we mow them to ground level we add insult to injury and burn the ground. (that is to kill insect eggs and weed seed). 2 years later it looks like this

    Bookmark   August 4, 2014 at 9:04AM
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ravenh2001

little closer

    Bookmark   August 4, 2014 at 9:08AM
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dbarron(z7_Arkansas)

Back to Juneberries/Saskatoons, I found A. canadensis to taste very similar to blueberries to me, and a whole lot easier to grow in Oklahoma.

    Bookmark   August 4, 2014 at 9:14AM
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franktank232(z5 WI)

Valgor-


Best sunfishing in my life was the past few days on the backwaters of the Mississippi River. My brother had a few that he said were the biggest he has ever caught (and he's close to 50). Just tight lining with a crawler in deep water.

My brother is up near Medford, WI (north central WI) bear baiting this morning. I told him to look for berries.

    Bookmark   August 4, 2014 at 9:47AM
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valgor(4b, WI)

for all those talking about pruning blueberries, I pick wild berries, thus the "Blueberry Heaven" only have to pick them. Little work, huge reward.

Franktank,
those are some nice gills. my mouth is watering. I have some relation in Medford, not sure the family name they married into, but they have a huge game bird farm there.

I am going to go out tomorrow night, it will probably be my last chance this year. I was out last night for 20 minutes before it started raining. many of the berries were over ripe and shriveling. still managed a few quarts tho.

    Bookmark   August 4, 2014 at 8:48PM
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