Life is taking an exciting new turn. I am opening a u-pick blueberry farm. I know it sounds zany seeing as before last year, I had never successfully managed to grow anything in my life. Well, (she says confidently) things change! The past two months I have been doing extensive online research; I have visited blueberry farms around here, Oshawa, New Brunswick, Pennsylvania and New Hampshire and spent hours speaking to the growers. My life has revolved around blueberries and I think I can do this. It’s only occasionally that I grab my head with both hands and start to rock – I can get kind of overwhelmed – but I am deeply enthused and mostly confident.
I am starting small while I learn. This season I am amending my first acre of field. The space has been bush-hogged, my rows have been laid out, plowed and tilled. By hand I have spread 700 lbs of elemental sulphur to organically decrease my pH and 400 lbs of a potash/nitrogen mix to fertilize. I have gotten my import licence and ordered 1000 guaranteed, disease-free plants from a licenced blueberry propagator in Michigan. I will pick them up early next April and plant each one in saturated peat moss before installing a drip irrigation system and overhead bird netting.
A cultivated, high-bush blueberry plant takes 7 years to mature but I am buying three-year old plants so I should have a limited harvest the year after planting. We will have a pilot season open only to family, friends and of course, faithful blog readers first, and then open to the public the following year. I will keep you updated and posted.
I will continue to maintain my massage practice, but my plan is to eventually have 5-10 acres of blueberries, a cut-your-own flowers section, my shop converted into a seasonal country store where I sell pies, muffins, syrup; basically all things blueberry (and some other homemade goodies). I want to have my own label of blueberry and fruit wines and get my manufactures and onsite retail licence so I can sell them in my store. But who know what will be; in the meantime, my little one acre u-pick patch will be fulfilling a long-time dream and if thats how it stays, that’s just fine – I don’t know anyone that loves blueberries more than me.