I finally went strawberry picking this past weekend with my husband near the Portland area at Maxwell's Farm in Cape Elizabeth, Maine. Keep on reading to see why you should go and check out some of my strawberry picking tips.
I can now cross strawberry picking off my summer to-do list, read it here!
Why Pick Your Own Strawberries?
You might ask, why pick strawberries yourself instead of buying them at the grocery store? First off, it's a fun experience since you get to hand-pick the best berries. Make sure you eat some berries along the way. You must taste test what your buying after all.
Secondly, they are less expensive than buying them at the store! They should be, right? You did all the work! I imagine the first farm owner who came up with the idea of marketing PYO strawberries saying, "To cut costs, Let's grow them and make people pick them too!" Genius.
I think this is the perfect summer activity to do with someone this month. However, if your interested you better do it fast since the strawberry season is short, lasting only three to four weeks. This year the strawberry farms were open for business a little bit later than usual, because of the rain I presume, which probably leaves the rest of the month of July for picking.
I 100% recommend Maxwell's Farm for strawberry picking if your in close proximity to Maine's southern coast. Since the farm is located near the ocean you occasionally get a cool sea breeze making crouching directly in the summer sun more bearable.
Maxwell's is also near Kettle Cove so its possible to visit the beach, grab an ice cream and pick some strawberries all in the same day. Read more about my trip here!
Strawberry Picking Tips
Here are some tips I learned so you can pick strawberries like a pro.
Pick the red ones, no matter how big or small. Once red, they don't grow anymore so its best to pick them before they are wasted. The deeper red ones tend to be more sweeter!
Grasp the stem right above the berries and twist to keep the hull intact. This will help to make them last longer.
Pick on a cloudy day. Since the fields don't have any shade it can get pretty hot and it may make your experience better if you can stay out of the harsh sun rays.
After picking, put your berries in a cool place as soon as possible to keep them from spoiling.
If your not using your berries right away you can freeze them. Pop them into a freezer bag with little air as possible after you washed, hulled, and dried them.
Thanks for reading!