Cheery Cherry Picking

red cherries on a tree

We went back to the farm this week to pick my favorite fruit: cherries.

red cherries on a tree
Red, ripe, and ready to eat!

One month ago these trees were in bloom. Flowers are pretty, but I prefer to see trees like this, filled with fruit.

Cherries are so juicy, sweet, and luxurious. One thing I can’t figure out: How can the flavor be so concentrated and rich? I usually pop another one in my mouth and contemplate….

red cherries on a tree
Let me check to make sure these are ripe.

I learned from the farmer that cherries are a difficult crop to grow. The trees here are protected from the rain by an open-sided greenhouse structure. The arches overhead are covered with plastic to keep the rain from falling on the fruit. Too much rain will make the cherries burst.

cherries growing on a tree
Plastic overhead keeps the rain off the cherries

Another problem with growing cherries is that the birds also think they are a tasty treat. The plastic greenhouse-style roof that keeps the rain off is connected to nets that are staked into the ground. This helps keep the birds away from the trees. In addition to the nets, the farmers put up several speakers playing a very loud bird call. The farmer explained that it’s a distress call, so that when birds hear it they will stay away, thinking that something horrible is happening to one of their feathered friends over there.

flowers in front of the farm store
Flowers in front of the farm store

The combination of the 90° heat and the plastic tarps overhead made cherry picking a rather sweaty endeavor, but we were cheered by the delicious, juicy cherries and the baskets we brought home.

American flag and a flag with a strawberry
The farm also does strawberry picking.

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