Blueberry Picking in Maine

The blueberry is native to Maine and they can be found growing everywhere all over the state in fields and barrens. That is because they thrive in the state’s naturally low acid soils.

 

Although you can buy them commercially it is a real tradition to go picking wild blueberries. Even commercial growers don’t tend to plant them or cultivate them. They just happen to own the land on which they grow.

 

Blueberry picking is a tradition that started centuries ago with the Native Americans of the area. They were the first to use these tiny sharp tasting berries as food and medicine.  They weren’t actually harvested commercially until the 1840s.

 

Most of the blueberry bushes can be found on ‘the barrens.” These are vast rolling plains of sandy soil that were formed by the glaciers and that perfectly suit the growing of low bush blueberries.  Other plants that grow in these barrens are rhodora, tea-berry, laurel and bracken.

 

These blueberries are a dark velvety blue and quite tiny. Other than in a few spots in Canada they really are not found anywhere else in the world.

 

The best time for anyone to pick blueberries is in August.  Any frost will kill these delicate tiny berries so it is always done way before frost can set it.

 

There are scores of wonderful pick-your-own farms in Maine.

 

In Adroscoggin County try Card’s Farm or Goss Berry Farm. You can pick your own raspberry and blueberries from dusk to dawn at both places.

 

In Aroostook County there is Circle B Farms, which has six acres of blueberries for PYO (pick your own.)  In Aroostookt here is also McNally’s Farm, Mac’s Best Produce and Hebert Farm.

In Cumblerland County you can pick your own at Crabtree’s Blueberries and The Stewart’s Farm.

 

In Franklin County there is Firth’s Fruit Farm and the Peace and Plenty Farm. The Peace and Plenty Farm sells organic wild sour top Maine blueberries.

 

In Hancock County you can pick your own in a marshy blueberry barrens at Hog Bay Blueberries.

 

In Kennebec County you can pick blueberries as well as pick up a little Maple Syrup for blueberry pancakes at Wagner’s Maple Sugar House.

 

In Lincoln County you can get big organic wild blueberries at Crummet Mountain Farm.

 

In Washington County you can pick them and buy nationally known preserves at Blue Barrens Farm.

 

In Walso County, both Staples Homestead and Sewall’s Orchards offer blueberry picking.

 

York County is the home if the famous Blueberry Hill Farm that offers a staggering ten acres of blueberries!

 

Enjoying Traditonal New England Cuisine

New England cosine encompasses delicious dishes made in Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Rhode Island and Vermont. For the most part these places are known for their traditional recipes that incorporate such indigenous ingredients as clams, maple syrups and beans.  Just follow along the state highways and stop at the many inns and bed and breakfasts to sample the best of what this state has to offer.

 

However lately the food in New England has gotten even more delicious and adventurous. If you thought New England is just about the clam chowder you are wrong!

 

These seaside states are famous for their clam chowders and there are as many recipes for it as there are grandmas, inns and spas. The Three Stallion Inn serves up delectable Corn Tarragon Chowder. The Wachusett Village Inn serves up both Smoked Salmon Chowder and Lobster chowder sprinkled with oyster crackers.

 

The entire state is known for homemade breads. If you like banana bread you will love the Chocolate Zucchini bread served at the Cabernet Inn. The Oatmeal Molasses bread served at the Rabbit Hill Inn is rustic and healthy for you.

 

Traditional raspberry scones are served up at the Old Tavern at Grafton. For a more decadent baked good try the Strawberry White Muffins or the Triple Chocolate Muffins at the Glynn House Inn.

 

In New England you find Maple Syrup on everything from pancakes to squash to ice cream. You will also find it in fudge, cookies and candy. However one of the most gourmet uses for it is in the recipe for Apple Chicken served up at Wachusett Village Inn. This is a chicken breast stuffed with apple and cheese soaked in maple syrup.

 

Lobster is a dietary staple in New England. Buttered lobster is found everywhere in restaurants along the coast. However, these “fruits of the sea” are now found in exotic gourmet dishes such as the “Grilled Lobster Tails with Foraged Fiddle Head and Leek Risotto found at the Inn by the Sea.

 

New England is also known for Inns serving special cocktails AT the Trapp Family Lodge a hot red wine drink known as Gluehwine is served.

At the Sebasco Harbor Resort there is a unique cocktail served called the Sebasco Lobster Bake, which is basically a vodka-based Ceaser with Horseradish and Lobster claw meat as a garnish.

When it comes to food there is a lot to discover in New England!