Strawberry fields forever: 'You-pick' strawberries are ready

With the arrival of spring in the Beaufort area, one of our favorite local past times has returned along with it: The lure of the strawberry patches from our local ‘you-pick’ farms.  Beaufort loves it’s local farms, it’s farmers, and industry, and support for local producers is at an all-time modern-day high.

We visited Barefoot Farms on Sea Island Parkway on St. Helena Island, where we found spring was already in full bloom.  Owner ‘Barefoot’ Jackie and the crew were milling about getting everything ready for the coming season, but still had a few minutes to sit with us and to be as kind and as neighborly as always.

The strawberries are indeed ready.  “We’re looking at a slightly above-average strawberry crop, with more than enough for everyone to enjoy”, Jackie said.

Looking around at Barefoot Farms, where everything is grown without the assistance of harsh chemicals and weed-killers (hence weeds surrounding the fields), we noticed lots of other fresh fruits and veggies growing.  Jackie informed us that “all the watermelon, cantelope, zucchini, broccoli, cauliflower, and squash you can eat will be available very soon”.   Also bountiful and ready for today’s picking were the Spring Mix lettuces in all their tenderness and color, spinach and other greens.  Expect, as well, a soon-to-be-available variety of onions, tomatoes, and beans.

It’s springtime in our neck of the southern woods.

We’ll gladly start with the strawberries, and we can’t wait for the rest.