Friday, June 12, 2009

How Strange

How strange it seems to read in other people's blogs that their strawberry season is just about over. This picture was taken right before I came in from the garden to make dinner tonight.

That's right, folks. Ours are just starting to blossom. Actually, despite the crazy, cold, wet, sunless weather we've been having, the strawberries are pretty close to being on schedule. I go by the rule of "a month from blossom to berry" and I noticed our first blossoms about a week ago. In a "normal" year (please define that if you can), we get our first ripe berries anywhere from July 1st to July 5th. So if all goes well, we should have berries to pick fairly close to that time this year.

When we lived in Illinois, strawberries were ready to harvest just about one month earlier than they are up here in Minnesota. The year we were expecting the birth of our daughter, we didn't have a strawberry patch in our garden so answered an ad in the paper from a local older couple who had more berries than they could use and were offering to sell some of theirs if you would come and pick your own. I remember the date well that we went to pick from their patch because it was June 13th, my due date.

As Roy and I were crawling along the rows picking berries, the very friendly man and woman were sitting in lawn chairs making conversation with us. The lady asked when I was due. I replied, "Today." The older gentleman jumped up and said, "Today?! Maybe you shouldn't be here. I mean . . . should you be picking berries? Do you feel okay? Why don't you come here and sit down. I'll pick the rest for you.”

I laughed and said I felt just fine and that if I weren't there picking berries I'd be out working in my own garden. (Matter of fact, my own parents drove the 55 miles to our house that afternoon to help process the berries and pick green beans in our garden. They, too, were sure I was "over-doing.")

As it turned out, I didn't give birth until July 5th, a whole three weeks later than my due date. And, yes, I do honestly believe I carried that (not-so) little bundle inside me for nine and three-quarters months. Even the delivering doctor said she looked like a month-old baby when she finally decided to make her emergence into the outside world.

How did I get off on that jag? Guess it's something I associate closely with strawberries.

Anyway, it does seem strange to me that some of you folks out there are well into and even coming to the close of your strawberry picking, preserving and eating season when we are still waiting to see the first little green berries begin to form. Just want you to know that the pictures you've been posting of your luscious berries have been driving me nuts!


Chicken Mama said...

Welllll, SEE?! Proof positive that it's IN MY NATURE to constantly be late for things! ;)

Mama Pea said...

Yes, there's no doubt about it, you have stayed true to form! :o)

MaineCelt said...

Ummm, if it's any comfort, most of my strawberry plants the fridge. I brought them home about a month ago, but we weren't able to get a load of loam delivered until last Sunday, and I refuse to plant them in any of the old beds where the voles took huge bites out of all the berries.

Haven't started squash or beans for the same reason. It's been cold an wet here, too. Peas, carrots, radishes, and spinach are the only things truly thriving...

BUT I have two 20-something houseguests arriving soon for a week's stay, and they both want to help me in the garden...oh, PROVIDENCE!!!

Mama Pea said...

MaineCelt - Ah, sweetie? You ain't gonna get NO berries off of those strawberry plants in the refrig! ;o) But, no worry, since you're supposed to pop off all blossoms the first season so the strength can go to the new plants, you should come out just fine this year.

I don't have my beans in yet either. I'm really thinking of not even planting squash or pumpkins this year because it's STILL so cold.

With your super-strong and willing work force (two gardening houseguests) for a week, you should be in good shape soon. I'll do an anti-rain dance for that week so you all can be productive outside from dawn til dusk!