Saturday, May 28, 2011

First Harvest of 2011

 I picked these strawberries today which marks the first harvest of 2011. So exciting!! I was a bit bummed though because there were about the same amount of ripe berries eaten by bugs. I was so worried about birds and squirrels stealing my berries that I completely forgot about the stinky insects that liked them too. I put bird nettimg over the plants not realizing that I had a bunch of insects to contend with. I sqooshed a pill bug and a hairy looking caterpillar that were munching away on my gorgeous berries. What should I do to prevent the bugs grom eating more berries? Should I pick the berries as soon as I see a flush of pink, prior to it being completely ripe??  Will they turn red after picking?  Any words of wisdom would be greatly appreciated. Organic gardening sure is hard. No wonder organic produce costs so much more!


  1. Your strawberries look great!
    My trick is planting twice what I think I will need.....some for me, some for the "enemy". There really is no way to prevent ALL damage. It's sad to see things half chewed , but that's life. I guess it makes us appreciate what we do get all the more!


  2. I try to keep the berries off the ground by keeping some straw around them. That helps keep the pill bugs from eating them right away. You should also get some Food Grade Diatomaceous Earth to use in the garden for bugs. It really helps alot. Here's a link

  3. Nice result. All I've had so far are radishes, salad leaves and a few mushrooms.

  4. You could try row covers, although they really need that full sun. I have never seen any bugs on mine or the fields around here, what kind of bugs are doing most of the damage? Ideally, you want them to be perfectly ripe before you pluck them off to avoid the grocery store type under or overripe ones. Do you have lots of bug eating birds? I have a mockingbird that lives in my yard and his life's work seems to be keeping my berry patch and canes clean, although he does eat berries, too LOL

  5. Good morning! Your berries look delish!

    You could sprinkle Diatamacious Earth all around your berry patch. DE is ground fossils that buggies eat then they die!

  6. Crushed eggshells will also keep most soft bodied bugs away. A combination of all the above solutions will insure an honest harvest, but you should resign yourself to a few sacrifices: the pests need to eat too!
    Picking unripe berries is not a solution. The berries will redden if your kitchen is warm enough, but they will not get any sweeter, and will remain firm until they begin to rot (think supermarket berries.)
    Just enjoy the ones you got, they look scrumptious!

  7. Don't even think about picking them before they are fully ripe! Those pesky pill bugs get their share of mine, too. I just cut off the bad parts and use the rest of the berry. And swear a lot. ^%*$#%* bugs!

  8. mmm mmmm lookin good :-)
    I had my first harvest this week but it was greens & herbs and much smaller!
    Here's to another great season of harvests!

  9. I am still waiting on my strawberries to even come up! I sure hope they survived.. It IS tough to be organic. I am trying to get myself to be more organic this year but it really upsets me when the bugs get to my food before I do. :( I love all of the tips given in the comments!


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