Sunday, August 16, 2015

A Lesson Learned

This post could also be titled, "Don't Count Your Blueberries Before They're Harvested."

Our blueberry bushes were loaded with blossoms this year.  Then the blossoms all turned into tiny green berries.  The green berries grew and started to turn a dark blue as blueberries are wont to do.

We picked berries a couple of times getting a total of maybe two quarts.  But the berries seemed to be ripening slowly, we could never find as big a quantity of them as we were expecting, so we gave up checking them every day.  When one of us did go out to pick, we were dismayed to find so few berries ripe and ready.

Then this morning, Papa Pea was up and at his deck earlier than usual, just after dawn, in his second story office which overlooks all of our garden area.  What was all that movement in the blueberry patch?  Eventually he identified several crows hopping in and around the bushes.  Hunh.  Wait.  Could those crows have been making early morning raids and stealing our berries?

After I was up and functioning, we went out to check the situation.  With a sinking feeling, our suspicions were confirmed.  Those $^!&* crows have literally cleaned off the bushes of every last berry except a few (very few) tiny green ones.

Yep.  We've lost our entire what-should-have-been bountiful blueberry crop to the crows.  We have never had trouble with birds bothering our blueberries.  Nope.  Never.  Not once.  

Until this year.

We have netting with which we could have covered the bushes and saved our crop.  

We (obviously) weren't diligent enough or quick enough (or smart enough) to figure out the situation before it was too late.

Now there will be no blueberry jam this year.  No blueberry juice.  No blueberries in yogurt.  No blueberry smoothies.  No blueberry syrup for pancakes.  No blueberry pies.  Oh, stop!  I can't stand it!

Well.

It's not the end of the world.  We won't suffer or go hungry this winter because of the lack of blueberries put by.

I do confess to having a strong urge to go out and kill every crow with a blue-stained bill I can find.

20 comments:

Anonymous said...

When you get done with your crows, can you come take care of mine LOL!!!!
Sue

DFW said...

Oh wow. Thank goodness that we aren't the only ones that forget to cover & protect our food sources. Live & learn from you guys. Thanks for the lesson, albiet at your loss. So sorry.

Sue said...

I'm so sorry about this. I never cover the patriots or bluerays, but ALWAYS cover my Chandlers. This year it was for naught, as a LATE frost wiped out our crop. We get just the tiniest handful a day of the Chandlers--which given their huge size is like 5 berries a day. Sob.
We must console ourselves with the gardener's favorite mantra: NEXT YEAR!!!
Have a good week, dear lady

Kristina said...

Oh no! I do know what you feel like however, with missing out on a bounty of any sort. We have zero fruit bushes, and lost the grapes too. Now my rhubarb is completely dead. This year stinks in all ways around. So sorry for you guys.

Lisa said...

Dang It, I feel your anger MamaPea. It's happened here several years. I have nets also but when I use them the dang birds still manage to get under in a tiny spot I don't have tied down as well as I think. The birds wiped out my sour cherry tree in one day this year. I fixed them though. I cut it down! Actually it was a miscommunication with boy running chain saw. So frustrating for you though.

Laurie said...

Lol!! I would react the same as you! When the squirrels raid the bird feed, I want to unload the BB gun on them. Blueberry thievery, well that's a whole different ballgame. You got an dynamite?

Susan said...

Bad birds! It's just not fair - little grubbers.

Mama Pea said...

Sue - Those darn crows are too smart for their own good!

Mama Pea said...

DFW - Yeah, we're really gonna miss our blueberries this year . . . but next year will be different!

Mama Pea said...

Sue - Live and learn, eh? At least, let's hope we've learned from this. We do feel kinda dumb in not realizing what was happening before it was too late. :o/

Mama Pea said...

Kristina - Before I realized it was not wise to dwell on this little misfortune, I did think about you and all that you lost this year. As Sue says, next year, huh? Darn right!

Mama Pea said...

Lisa - So what did you do to the boy running the chain saw?

I know birds are notorious for getting cherries. Really hard to cover a big cherry tree. Not fair though.

Mama Pea said...

Laurie - Now you've given me an idea! I can just see the black feathers floating through the air now. ;o)

Mama Pea said...

Susan - Nope, not fair . . . but they were just trying to fill their tummies. Which they did very well!

Sparkless said...

Awww that's sad but crows have to eat too, they are just doing what crows do. It's too bad you didn't cover them but what's done is done. I'd go out and buy myself some blueberries just so I could have some to make jam or put in the freezer. One can't live without blueberries.

Sandy said...

Mama Pea,

Birds are nice to watch......that is until they start messing with our gardens. Then it's time to take extreme action.......honey where's the BB gun??
I so hear you on putting netting on and over certain fruits and vegetables to keep the birds away.
Hugs,
Sandy

Kelly said...

Oh no! My grapes suffered the same fate! I would watch little birds or my chickens sitting on the vines and wiggling around to make the grapes fall down. I finally just harvested the whole lot of them ripe or not and made wine :)

Mama Pea said...

Sparkless - I know we can't really blame the birds. (I'd like to, but that wouldn't be right!) I think we will buy some blueberries. I can get organic ones (frozen) from our co-op. They're so good for you because of their high anti-oxidant value that I hate to be without at least some over winter.

Mama Pea said...

Sandy - Sure wish we had been more on the beam, but no use crying over gone blueberries, eh? Next year, watch out birds!

Mama Pea said...

Kelly - Well, at least your chickens got some of the benefits. The grapes didn't all go to the wild birds. Glad to hear you got some wine from them anyway.