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Mayhaw Berry Farm Festival 2011

We have a special treat from our 5th annual Mayhaw Berry Harvest festival. David Ward and his brother made a video of the jelly making process. David makes his jelly from just juice and sugar, and they used a antique press to get a lot more juice that you would by hand-squeezing.

We moved the video to our Mayhaw Pond page.

It seems that Nature picked this weekend to end the drought because it rained-a lot! People still showed up, though and the hayride was full every trip. We and the many vendors just waited out storms in our cars and kitchen. There were storms all over in this region of the United States and our ranch was no exception. We didn’t get the damage that other areas experienced, though, and we’re grateful for that.

A big thanks to Dottie Welcher for the photos.

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Original Announcement:

Saturday, May 14th, 2011, 10:00 AM to 4:00 PM
Sunday, May 15th, 2011, Noon to 4:00 PM

 Mayhaw berries on the treeThe trees are full of berries and we’ve already started harvesting. This is  earlier than normal because of this year’s unusually warm spring. It does looks like we’ll have a good crop available for our 5th annual festival.

The Mayhaw trees are natives and nature handles all their needs.  Well, we do help by cleaning out all the natural debris. There is nothing artificial added to them. They are in a protected wet area. In fact, in the past it was so full of water that we went out in our canoe during harvest time. This year it is dry and we are using screening, tarps, plastic, and even a parachute under the trees to catch the berries as we shake the trees.  The berries last a little longer because they don’t get wet but it is actually harder to harvest them.

There will be a lot going on at the ranch that weekend with hayrides, lamb and kid (goat) petting, seeing the free range chickens, and the big Great Pyrenees guardian dogs. One of our yearly highlight is an old-fashioned Mayhaw Jelly making demonstration. David Ward, our local jelly making expert, has something new this year. He has borrowed an old-fashioned fruit press. David wants to get every last drop of juice for his famous jelly.  I’m think of using the pulp for a Mayhaw Butter recipe. You know, like Apple Butter or Pear Butter but Mayhaw Butter instead.

We have a great list of vendors that will be here for added interest. Homemade soaps, honey, fresh vegetables, walking sticks from bamboo, kitchen products,  custom made bat houses,  and things to eat. Others are signing up. I’ll post a list soon.

During the festival, we will have berries available generally packaged into one-gallon bags (4 pounds plus an ounce or two). This is just the right amount to make 10 to 12 jars of homemade jelly. The price is $25.00 per bag ($6.25 per pound). There is jelly all ready made for those that don’t want the joy of process. We’ve even added Mayhaw Pepper Jelly to our line this year.

How to get here – Barnes Road is 1 mile north of JCKC and the farm is 7/10th’s of a mile off of North 19. GPS takes folks out 149 or Boston Highway but it is easier to come straight out 19. Look at the map on the Visit Us tab.

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