Yesterday, after we finished our first blueberry picking, I decided to go up the street and take a look at Blue Jay Orchard. The kids were already starting to get worn out, so this trip was really just to check the place out.
They are located in Hiram, Ohio. They are off route 422 a couple of miles east of route 44. From our house in Mayfield Heights, it would have been about 36 minutes. Since we left from another farm, it was only about 15 minutes away.
I love the sign that you see from route 422 and the one near the entrance for the farm.
There’s a useful hours and time post with a phone number. I had in my mind that they didn’t open until 10 AM, which is why we hadn’t visited there yet, but in fact, they open at 8 AM. As we pulled in, we noticed that they have the bushes covered with netting to keep the birds out. Apparently, blueberry patches can lose a significant yield to birds. Since they don’t have a lot of acreage, they found it worth the money to invest in the netting.
Sally and Nick are really getting the hand of the process. It’s nice for me that they understand picking and how fruits and vegetables are grown. Yesterday, we picked in the back. Turns out they have picking near the entrance and then also toward the back of their farm. The signs were easy to navigate.
Here’s a photo of the proprietors, Lowell and Mary Evans. They were very nice to us. Lowell shared that they don’t spray the berries, but unfortunately have to spray the apples. This was a tough year due to the hail and the apple crop isn’t fairing as well as they would like. I’m not a blueberry plant connoisseur, but the blueberries looked quite plentiful to me. After picking, we took our berries up to the barn to have them weighed and pay. The barn is also their market. Since the kids were in the car, I didn’t take any time to look around.
I love the back of the sign as you exit. It was such a beautiful property. Since we had already picked 7 pounds of berries earlier in the day, we just picked a few here.
We ended up with 0.9 pounds for $2.80. This is only a couple of cups of berries. Blueberries are $2.95 a pound. There was a sign when we went to the barn that they had a 5 pound minimum, but I had no idea when we were picking. I suspect most people have at least 5 pounds whenever they pick, so I doubt the minimum is a huge issue. Lindsey said not to worry about it. That was good, because it was not going to be practical for us to pick more.
We have some other farms to visit for blueberries before the season ends, but I suspect we’ll try this orchard out for apples in the fall. I’m glad apple season is long, since there are so many farms to visit!
Blue Jay Orchard is located at 17909 Rapids Road, Hiram, OH 44234. Phone: 440-834-4318.