Farm, Food, Garden

Honeyberry Heaven

Let me start off. I’ve never been good with directions. I get turned around, don’t pay attention, for whatever reason, I always get lost. But, I blame this on growing up in Arkansas. We have no sort of grid system, we have curvy little highways that run through the hills and small towns. So, if you don’t know where you’re going, you may not get there. I have been wanting Honeyberry bushes since I heard of them. And, it just so happens that the largest grower and supplier of Honeyberry bushes in the US is located a few towns over from us. What luck! Honey berries are similar to blueberries, but bigger and more prolific.

Berry farm

Berry farm

So, my dad called the place and scheduled for us to go pick the plants up. Never having been to this place, he asked the girl on the phone where they were located? During high school, I worked at my uncle’s drug store and when anyone called to ask me for directions, it was a disaster. And, the girl working at the berry place was apparently just like me.

That's her in the orange

That’s her in the orange

Dad told her he knew how to get to the town and what highway we’d be coming in on. We needed directions from there. Here are the exact directions she gave: “Drive past the guy who builds the little buildings and if you look through the trees, you’ll see a barn up on a hill. Turn on the little lane by the barn. If you get to the bridge, you’ll know you’ve gone too far.” See, this is how we give directions in Arkansas. Which bridge? Which barn? You’ll know when you see it. So, we drove and came to what I thought was the right barn. It was on a hill. But there were no trees. Nope, not the right one. We crossed a bridge, but there was never a guy building the little buildings before it, so that couldn’t have been right.

Not the right barn.

Not the right barn.

After driving around for about thirty minutes trying to find this place, we stumbled upon it. And sure enough, there was a little barn through the trees on the hill and a little lane. The owner later informed us, in a heavy Russian accent, that “Barbara runs the phone, so don’t call because Barbara is no good.”

The right barn.

The right barn.

When I was little, people always asked what I wanted to be when I grew up. I changed my mind all the time. And I’ve changed my mind again. I want to be this lady. She was one of the leading pioneers to bring honey berries to the US and she knows her stuff. She spouted off information about planting and growing and everything in between as fast as I could understand it.

Giving instructions

Giving instructions

I asked her how long she’d been growing berries. {Insert thick Russian accent here} “I grow berries in Russia since I was 9 years old. I’m 54 now.” That’s a lot of years of berry growing. I think I’ve got some catching up to do before I can be like her, but I’m getting a start on it. I’m not sure I’ll ever achieve that accent, but that’s okay, I’ve got an accent of my own and I’m fine with that. The honeyberries are in the ground and the raspberries look like they’ll be putting on blooms any day now. And, I’ve got the email address of the best berry lady in the land, so I think I’m set. Let the berry growing commence.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s