Tuesday, August 07, 2007
A Berry Amazing Experience.
Last Sunday a group of friends and I traveled to Patrick's Mountain Grown Berry Farm in Camino. (Camino is located about an hour away from Sacramento off of Highway 50.)
The farm is owned by Patrick Hoover. He recently aquired the berry farm which had been previously established with plans to increase the variety of fruit available and to sell locally grown vegetables. The farm is on its way to becoming certified organic. The certification process takes three years, but organic growing practices are already being used to grow everything on the farm. Mr. Hoover says, "[My] aim is leave the land better than what I got it. Farmers are true stewards of the land and we have to do our part to preserve it."
When you arrive at the farm, you check in with the ladies in the farm store and choose either a pail or a flat in which to place your berries as you are picking.
I chose a flat for my berries, and it was placed in a flat carrier. Children will most usually be comfortable carrying pails, as the flat carrier is not light, and a little cumbersome.
We were all given a map to locate the berries that were currently ready to pick. On that day, Grape blackberries, Chester Blackberries, and Navajo thornless blackberries, were numerous and perfectly ripe. We were also lucky to catch the very beginning of the raspberry crop (I spent the majority of my time at Patrick's foraging for golden raspberries, which were few and far between this early in the month.
A berry celebration will take place at the farm on September 1 through the 3rd this year. There will be picnicking, games, music, and a delicious barbeque dinner! I plan on going back at that time because the raspberries will be ready to pick. FYI: You're missing out if you have never tasted a golden raspberry...
The farm store offers frozen berries that are already out of season, berry purees, and gourmet jellies and jams. They also sell produce, locally made honey and a variety of cookbooks and jam making supplies such as pectin.
The farm is located at 4455 Pony Express Trail, Camino, CA. Their phone number is 530-647-2833.
Here is the part where I tell you how amazed I am with some of the simplest things. I stood there in the magnificent weather picking those raspberries and it was one of those moments I have sometimes that I want to freeze in time. I guess because I knew I was picking the berries and that whatever I took home I was going to make into other things. So happy in that field I was...
I thought of my grandmother who lived in Kentucky and always made jams and jellies every year. I am a lot like her because of the amount of time I spend in the kitchen and I love that. I hope she is smiling down on me and everything I create.
Love & Sugar xoxo cakegrrl2007