Cuisine Crawl 4 MINS READ

Blueberry Picking In Florida – Everything You Need To Know

Blueberry Picking In Florida – Everything You Need To Know

Cuisine Crawl 4 MINS READ
Blueberry picking in Florida

If you have read the classic 1948 book “Blueberries for Sal” written by Robert McCloskey you will understand the feelings and sentiments of the mother who used to go to the Maine countryside with her child to pick blueberries. Blueberry picking is a unique experience that will give you a lot of joy and happiness! All you need to do is come to Florida to get the fun started!

Florida has gained much fame for its fresh, delicious citrus, fatty tomatoes, and its juicy, red strawberries. But now, blueberries are entering into this arena as well. Blueberries grew wild in Florida for many centuries until farmers commercially began cultivating them. Today, after advancements in food processing and consciousness of healthy eating habits and ingredients, blueberry cultivation in Florida has increased significantly.

When is blueberry picking season in Florida?

Blueberry picking season in Florida

Blueberry picking season in Florida generally runs between March and May. Unfortunately, that means you’ve missed the window for this year. However, if you’re interested in planning ahead for next year, you can start looking for farms around March and keep an eye on the weather, as it can affect the exact start and end dates.

What are the different varieties of blueberries found in Florida?

Florida Blueberry varieties

Florida’s mild climate isn’t ideal for traditional northern highbush blueberries, but The University of Florida and other breeding programs have developed low-chill cultivars that flourish in the Sunshine State. Two main types of blueberries grow well in Florida: rabbiteye and southern highbush.

Rabbiteye Blueberries are generally recommended for areas north of Ocala, where winters get a little colder. They’re a good choice for their adaptability, disease resistance, and late blooming time which helps avoid frost damage to flowers.

Southern Highbush Blueberries are better suited for areas south of Ocala and north of Sebring. They’re known for their early ripening and good yields and are an early-season variety particularly suited to Florida’s evergreen blueberry production system.

What are the best places to go blueberry picking in Florida?

Best places to go blueberry picking in Florida

Florida Best Blueberry Farm: Florida Best Blueberry Farm, located in Inverness, is known for its delicious blueberries. They offer U-pick blueberries, allowing you to enjoy the experience of selecting your own fruit.

Southern Hill Farms: Southern Hill Farms in Clermont, is a family-owned and operated farm offering a variety of activities throughout the year. They have blueberry picking during the winter and spring, and strawberry picking in the spring.

Blueberry Hill Farm: Blueberry Hill Farm in Clermont, is a charming destination for organic blueberry picking. If organic produce is important to you, then a visit to this farm is worth it. The farm is known for its organic blueberry varieties like Kestrel, Chickadee, Avanti, and Springhigh.

How do I pick the sweetest blueberries in Florida?

how to pick the sweetest blueberries

Look for the color: The sweetest blueberries will be a uniform, deep blue color all the way around. Avoid any berries that are still red or pink, or have any green patches.

Pick the plumpest ones: The biggest and plumpest blueberries are usually the ripest and sweetest.

Feel for firmness: Gently squeeze the blueberry. It should be firm but yield slightly to the touch. Avoid any berries that are mushy or soft.

Ask the farm: If you’re u-picking at a blueberry farm, ask the staff which areas have the ripest berries. They may also have specific varieties known for sweetness.

Where can I buy Florida blueberries?

where to buy Florida blueberries

Grocery stores: Most major grocery stores in Florida will carry fresh Florida blueberries during the season. They’ll usually be located in the produce section.

U-pick farms: Many blueberry farms in Florida offer u-pick experiences, where you can go out into the fields and pick your own blueberries. This is a great way to get fresh blueberries and enjoy a fun day out with family or friends.

Frequently Asked Questions

How much do blueberries cost at a U-Pick farm?

Prices vary by farm, but you can expect to pay around $5 per pound for blueberries you pick yourself.

How do I know which blueberries are ripe?

Look for plump, deep blue berries. Avoid berries that are green, red, or purple.

What should I carry when going blueberry picking in Florida?

Be sure to wear sunscreen, a hat, and closed-toe shoes. Bring water and some cash (although some farms may accept cards).

What are some other things to keep in mind for blueberry picking?

Be sure to check the farm’s website or call ahead for their current hours and picking conditions. Follow the farm’s instructions about which areas to pick in and how much you can pick. Be gentle with the bushes and dispose of any trash properly.

Ritesh Raj

COO at CuddlyNest

Editorial Policy

Last update: 6 June 2024

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