In search of fresh picked strawberries at Foxfire Farm!

Strawberry art fresh picked for you

I still remember the first time I experienced the joy of fresh picked strawberries, sun ripened, sweet and savored straight from the garden.

During a visit to my Grandparent’s farm, my Grandmother handed me a bowl and asked me to go to the garden and pick strawberries to top her homemade vanilla ice cream.  And that wonderful trip to her garden was my introduction to what a real strawberry should taste like!  The berries were so sweet and delicious, and I probably ate my share before I got back to the house!

That might have been the beginning of my lifelong obsession with strawberries.

Over the years I’ve collected vintage prints and postcards of strawberries, painted strawberries, and red is my favorite color to wear!  And every spring I search for fresh picked strawberries that might capture the taste of the sweet berries I remember from childhood.  They were a tough act to follow.

The strawberries I find at the grocery store pale in comparison.  A strawberry shouldn’t be crunchy or white inside!  It should be red all the way through, sweet and juicy.

And when I read that chef Jasper Mirabile Jr., owner of Jasper’s Restaurant in Kansas City, gave rave reviews of Foxfire Farm where you can pick your own fresh strawberries, I had to give it a try!

So on a beautiful Saturday morning we drove south of Kansas City to Louisburg, Kansas in search of fresh strawberries like the ones I remember.

Foxfire Farm is a 75 acre homestead owned by Sharon and Carl Shroeder.  We met Carl and learned about the challenges of growing strawberries.  From unpredictable weather to strawberry craving critters, it isn’t an easy job.  Carl showed us how to look for the ripest berries under the leaves and we started filling our boxes with beautiful red strawberries!

I’ll admit to popping one into my mouth and I was delighted to find a sweet, delicious sun-ripened berry as good as the fresh strawberries I remembered!

The Sweet Ann strawberries have a glossy red exterior that is matched by a red interior.  They are beautiful, sweet strawberries that actually taste as good as they look!

Strawberry art fresh picked for you

The perfect blue sky and quiet of the country made the process of picking so enjoyable that we picked more berries than we had planned.  But there’s no such thing as too many strawberries!

Strawberry art fresh picked for you

The first thing we did when we got home was to enjoy a big bowl of sliced berries and vanilla bean ice cream.  The strawberries were perfectly ripe, juicy, sweet, and delicious!

Strawberry art fresh picked for you

I couldn’t bear to freeze all the extras, so I decided to share our fresh picked berry bounty.

I  had some inexpensive berry baskets that I’d purchased at the craft store and thought a label would add a personal touch for a sweet gift for friends!

I used a strawberry watercolor illustration I had painted, added a type banner and formatted it as a box label.  I printed it, cut it out and glued it onto the box.  Now my fresh picked gift was ready to share!

And as mentioned, over the years I’ve collected vintage strawberry prints from books, postcards, and antique garden catalogs.

This beautiful vintage strawberry illustration is one of my favorite prints!

The joy of fresh picked strawberriesIt’s from a set of 1912 U.S. Department of Agriculture books that my Mom bought for me at a garage sale for $3!   What a great find.

If you’d like to download the vintage printable, it’s in the Food & Drink free printables library here.

This is another sweet reward of our morning spent picking strawberries at Foxfire Farm.  Fresh whipped cream and delicious strawberries sweetened by the sun!

Strawberry art fresh picked for you

If you’d like more information about Foxfire Farm, check out their Facebook page at Foxfire Farm Kansas for berry readiness and picking times.

And if you don’t live near Kansas City check out fresh berry availability at your local farmer’s market!

Strawberry season is sweet but short, so pick, eat, share & enjoy!

The joy of fresh picked strawberries

 

 

 

 

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