Though it wasn’t such a happy beginning. Having spent our first winter together buying big, bright, but absolutely flavourless strawberries imported from Florida, I became frustrated — fuel for determination. As a freelance writer, I have a flexible work schedule and so, I was able to pick enough strawberries and raspberries at Noëlville Berry Farm to bring us into the upcoming season! I even picked a few baskets for my mom (smiley face).
Encouraged, Marc and I decided to pick and sell wild blueberries and did quite well. We just had to make a few calls to people we know and visit a local lodge. Piece of blueberry cheesecake.
We’re doing it all again this year, and we’re adding cranberries to the mix. We didn’t find our spot until the end of the season so we didn’t get to pick many, but enough for us to experiment with. As with pumpkin, I didn’t want to make desserts, so I found a good dinner recipe online — acorn squash stuffed with rice, cranberries, and walnuts. Oh, yum!
Since we got such a positive response last summer, we figure that, like us, people prefer tasty berries to watery ones, but maybe don’t have the time to get out there, live too far away, want to save their backs, or just don’t know where the good spots are.
Their use of chemicals is very minimal — they believe it's natural to have mice and insects in the fields, to have different sizes of berries, to see a weed here and there. They don't spray the berries directly, nor do they have a fall growing season exactly because the fruit need to be sprayed directly at that time.
Anyone can pick their own berries at Noëlville Berry Farm, so call ahead beginning in mid-June at (705) 898-2768. Annette also freezes what's left at season's end, perfect for Christmastime purchases.
Heaping baskets usually contain a bit more than the stated quantity.
Prices listed below are from last year:
- Strawberries picked at Noëlville Berry Farm: Four litres equals twelve dollars.
- Raspberries picked at Noëlville Berry Farm: One litre equals seven dollars and twenty-five cents.
- Wild blueberries: One litre equals ten dollars.
- Wild cranberries: One litre equals ten dollars.