Sunday, June 28, 2009

Cherry Ripe

Ripe for the plucking.

It's Cherry picking time! Just half an hour up San Franciscito Canyon you come to Leona Valley and scads of pick-your-own cherry farms.

Steph and I went up there last weekend to pick cherries at a small family cherry farm called Amber's You-Pick Cherries. They handed us buckets and told us to go to it. Only warning: don't take the stems, just the berries.

Well those buckets would hold 5 lbs. of cherries. Surely we'd get tired long before that. Wrong! It's compulsive. There are just so many cherries -- and once you get started, it's hard to stop picking.

Amber's has 11 varieties of cherries, most of which were still available. We were encouraged to taste the cherries to see if we liked them, and I liked the deep purple ones the best -- Bings? Steph was partial to the yellow-orange ones, Raniers. But it didn't take us long to fill our buckets!

In fact, we each came home with over 6 lbs. of cherries!

It was windy -- you can see the leaves blowing.

Steph in the thick of it.

More wind-blown cherries. It was quite gusty.

A Ranier tree in front of the car.

Walking back from the port-a-places.

It's very family-friendly and picnics are encouraged.

Lots of families out for the day.

Well the cherries didn't last the week. ;- j
So Bill and I went back up to Leona Valley this on Sat. to pick some more. Amber's was sold out, but just down the road apiece was Rhodes Cherry Farm, and they were still picking. This time they gave us paper sacks -- a big mistake!
We were directed waay up the hill, but we could see there were cherries to be had closer.

Here I am plucking and plopping cherries right into the sack.

Bill found a tree he liked. I had to remind him he didn't have to pick every cherry off the tree!

It's just too easy.

I found a tree I liked. There must have been 100 lbs. of cherries on that tree!

I got real good at it. In fact, too good!

We weren't at it an hour before we knew we'd better quit. Here are our spoils.

19 lbs. of cherries!! We were lucky we had that much money along as they only take cash.

Washed and stored in the fridge (but not for long!) they fill 3 gallon ziploc bags plus a quart one to bulging. We've already worked our way thru over a quart, and thankfully we'll be divvying them up between Will and Steph and Julie and Eichling. Cherries for everyone! 8-]