MIDDLEFIELD – Strawberry season is in full swing at Lyman Orchards with over six acres of ready-to-pick fields.
“The berries are really good flavor this year,” said John Lyman, executive vice president of Lyman Orchards. “They’re a little small, but the trade off is excellent flavor.”
A cooler spring deterred the growing season by about a week. Usually, the season begins in early June.
This year, the pick-your-own strawberry season began Friday.
Guests can pick strawberries straight from the ground in the fields down the street from The Apple Barrel orchard store.
“We have people filling up the full flat or you have people just buying quarts, it really depends what they’re going to do,” said Tim Burt, director of marketing and retail operations at Lyman Orchards.
For Wallingford resident Jenna Bourgeois and her family, strawberry shortcake was the end goal during a recent trip to the orchards.
“I’ve heard it’s highly recommended,” she said of the pick-your-own season. “I’m a huge fan of strawberry shortcake so that would be the hope.”
Burt said people often pick a lot of strawberries to melt into jams and jellies.
“Others will just pop them right in their mouth,” he said.
Every year there is between six and seven acres of strawberries for people to pick from. New fields are planted in the spring and old ones are removed in the fall.
While apple picking is a favorite activity among area residents, Lyman said strawberry picking is very popular.
“It’s the first crop,” he said. “You can only get it three and a half weeks out of the year.”
The annual strawberry festival this weekend will pay tribute to the berries with a variety of events.
“Everything will have a strawberry theme,” Lyman said.
The festival kicks off Saturdaywith breakfast on the deck of The Apple Barrel starting at 8 a.m., followed by pick-your-own in the field, live music by local duo Presley and Taylor and other family-friendly activities.
Strawberry season is expected to last until the end of June, with the raspberry and blueberry seasons following later this summer.
More information can be found at http://lymanorchards.com/