Monday, April 23, 2012

Agarita Harvest

The kids inspect the agarita bush

We harvested agarita berries on Sunday at our farm near Wimberley, Texas. Chris snapped some pictures of the event:

Joe Henry and Garner with the wagon full of tools
First, we loaded the wagon with various harvest baskets, plastic bins and lids. When harvesting agaritas, it's easiest to use something wide, sturdy and lipped to place underneath the bush to catch the berries.

I find it easiest to harvest by limb and section, but there are several ways to get these sweet-tart little berries off the plant. I lay my container (in the above picture, it is a plastic lid from a storage bin) on the ground under a few limbs. I'll then hold the end of each limb and beat it with a stick or wooden spoon. The ripe berries will fall onto the container along with some debris.

Whacking the limb over the container

 Once I've moved my containers around to all parts of  the bush and I feel like I've whacked enough limbs, I'll begin to sort out the berries (or red jewels, as my kids call them) from the debris.

Baskets can also be used for the harvest

Pulling the good berries from the blue bin and placing them in the yellow bin

After I sort out the good berries from the bad, I then process them or freeze them for later. Here are a few more shots from our agarita harvest:

My helpers

Garner preferred to harvest the berries by hand and eat every other one

Bringing in the Harvest

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