GOODSON'S STRAWBERRY FIELD

Goodson's You-Pick StrawberriesThere's always something to pick and lots of places to pick it. May is strawberry time, and there are You-Sure-Can-Pick-'em type strawberry fields all over the state. This one is Goodson's and it's just off highway 10 between Little Rock and Lake Maumelle. As you can see, folks make a kind of picnic out of it, gabbing and picking and pretty much letting the kids romp as they will.

The fruit harvest in Arkansas is an ongoing proposition, strawberries, peaches, blackberries, blueberries, apples, grapes. Lots of fruit harvested here comes from small-scale operations like this. The hep-ur-sef (85 cents a quart) format means that there's no significant migrant work force picking for pennies a quart and making lots of money for the grower. But then, that's the trade-off. We can either turn the fruit harvest into a picnic or we can turn it into an industry and get the cash equivalent of a picnic.

Your Host's berrypicking rules of thumb: 1) Berries the size of golf balls look good, but don't taste as good as smaller berries. 2) There's something wrong if there are no weeds in the field. 3) Don't buy the ones picked by the staff. Pick your own. 4) Go early in the day.

RTJ--5/10/99


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