Saturday, 5 November 2016

Cranberry Fields

We decided to just hang around this lovely little campground for another day, and wait until tomorrow to visit Atlantic City.

It is so warm and peaceful here.  Charlie and I did some walking and he spotted a lizard of some sort climbing a tree. I checked it out and found out it was The Eastern Fence Pine Lizard.  It was very hard to spot because it's skin resembles the bark found on Pine trees

The Eastern Fence Pine Lizard
I fixed a few things around the Ponderosa and sat outside on a lawn chair for a while.  Then Charlie and I took a drive to check out some cranberry fields we had spotted near here on the way in.  Im glad we did because we ran into a Cranberry farmer and he didn't mind explaining the whole operation to me.  All of the Cranberries grown here go to the Ocean Spray facility.

Cranberries are grown over the summer under much the same conditions as any cereal crop.  They are grown on a bed of sandy soil and are perennial plants.  I was told this farm field was planted over 20 years ago.

drainage pipes are about every 20 ft across the field

Right before harvest they start to flood the fields.  They put about a foot of water over the whole thing and then they send a machine in to comb the berries off the plants.

The machine has V shaped combs on it and it doesn't hurt the vine but coaxes the berry off the vine.

The machine has large tracks on it and never turns in the field or bog as they call it.  Instead there is a ramp that he climbs up on the berm with and turns there and goes back down.

Then a guy with a special hydraulic arm comes along and moves the ramp over ready for the next pass.

two of the ramps- one for going in one for coming out
After the bog is combed, they put more water in it to float the berries to the top.  Cranberries have an air pocket in the middle so they float really well.  They are then pumped through a machine that sorts the berries from the junk and into a truck they go.

These cranberries are a lot larger than the cranberries we have at home.

The cranberry fields are very pretty when they are floating on the water.

Same view as last night from our window.

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