May 2, 2010

Happy, Happy, Happy

…that is how you would have described me yesterday.  The opening day of the Market Square Farmers Market brought with it all sorts of warm fuzzy feelings.  If I had to sum it up in one word, it would be “community”.  We saw our favorite farmers.  We visited with friends and their children who were shopping.  We drank in the sunlight and warm weather before the rain.  We talked to local people about urban homesteading, raising chickens in the back yard, Three Rivers Market, and the virtues of CSAs.  We talked with farmers we hadn’t seen since the fall about the hard winter.  As I walked with my daughter on one hand and my husband on another back to our car with a cooler full of fresh food, I was about as happy as a gal could be. 

Just when I thought that the day couldn’t get any better, it did.  Late in the afternoon, I received a return call from Rutherford’s strawberry farm in Blount County.  They were picking, and the rain hadn’t hit them yet.  With a quick look at the weather forecast, we loaded up the car and headed out.  Since it wasn’t a planned trip, I only picked a little more than 16 pounds.  I knew this would make enough for at least one batch of low sugar jam and leave plenty for eating.  The people at the farm were so nice, so welcoming!   We’ll be returning late in the week so that I can preserve more over the weekend.  I highly recommend you pay them a visit if you like strawberries and are local. 

All in all, it was a very satisfying day. 


  1. I was just about to call them to call Rutherford's to see if this was a good time to come pick some berries. Do you know the dates and times they are open? What's their price per pound? Do they have broccoli right now?

  2. I can't remember the exact ppp. I want to say it was $1.75/lb, though. They are open M, W, F, and Saturday 8am-1pm and 4pm-I think 8pm, but it could be 7pm. The broccoli won't be ready for another 3 weeks.

    I overheard the guys talking about farming strawberries. One said that after a big rain, the strawberries will soak up a lot of water. They might be big, but they won't be as sweet. From that info, it sounds like it might be best to wait until a few days after the rains to visit.

  3. I think we'll aim for Friday to give the fields a few days to dry out. I've gone before the day after a rain, and the fields were impossible to maneuver. I'll get there as soon as I can wrangle Devin and Brooke in the car. Earlier is better. Maybe we'll see you there.

    BTW, 16 pounds of strawberries is VERY impressive for a "short" trip. I've never been able to get more than 3 or 4 with the kids. Maybe this year will be different.