Updated 10.15am 17th January 2022
THE FARM IS ONLY OPEN TO REGISTERED CUSTOMERS WHO CAN SHOW PROOF THAT THEY ARE FULLY VACCINATED AGAINST COVID-19. THERE WILL BE NO EXCEPTIONS TO THIS REQUIREMENT.
Despite the late start to the season, it will be a short one. Northland, our main variety, has most of its crop fully ripe and is in excellent picking condition, while those varieties which escaped bird attack during flowering, are rapidly ripening and offer excellent picking now. Customers who have not already been this season should be aware that the best picking will have past within a week or so.
OPENING TIMES FOR COMING WEEK
MONDAY, TUESDAY and WEDNESDAY CLOSED EACH DAY
THURSDAY 20th OPEN 9.00am – 5pm Last entry to farm 3pm
FRIDAY 21st OPEN Opening times for Frid – Sun to be advised closer to day
SATURDAY 22nd OPEN
SUNDAY 23rd OPEN
The past few months have been some of the most difficult periods in managing the farm since we started growing blueberries about 40 years ago. In particular several storms, and especially one in June and the other in October caused severe damage on the farm, with more than a dozen large eucalyptus trees falling over fences and our blueberries. Two large trees, possible 25-30 metres tall fell on the nets covering our Northland blocks, causing massive damage to the roof and walls of the nets. Further, numerous branches caused lesser, but still serious damage. Fortunately, the structure holding the nets up did not fail. The same cannot be said for the structure holding the net over the old block. It is much older and we had to replace about 10 poles. Further the net was rent in several places, especially in the vicinity of the pole positions.
Cutting the trees up to remove them off the net was a difficult and dangerous task, made worse by the size of the trunks. These were cut up into 30 cm blocks, but even these were too heavy for a person to lift. We estimate that we spent between 40 and 45 days removing the trees and repairing the net. Repairing the net was an even more difficult task than removing the trees as the net repair had to be undertaken 4m above the ground. Such was the magnitude of the task, we were not able to carry out repairs on our old block before the blueberries started flowering. Consequently, the parrots had an open field day eating the flowers and several varieties in this block will have virtually no fruit. On some of the Denise bushes it is difficult to find two or three fruit, as the parrots stripped the bushes of all the flowers. Customers who have a particular variety that they wish to pick in our old, mixed variety block should contact us before they come. Some varieties, such as Blue Rose will still have a good crop of fruit.
Fortunately, we were largely able to keep the parrots out of our two Northland blocks and we have an excellent crop of quality fruit in both blocks.
Graeme & Kay