In early spring of 2011, there was a chance that for the first time in over 25 years, there would be no blueberry-picking going on at Brandywine Farms. However, as seems to happen in rural America, in stepped a local family who for many years had been one of those loyal customers that would wait patiently every summer for the berries to ripen. It was an opportunity to allow a great local tradition to continue uninterrupted. And so it began…well let’s not kid anyone, it wasn’t quite that easy.
A local doctor with a heart much bigger than his head (sometimes), decided he and his wife of 50+ years would take over the blueberry farm and keep it running without hesitation. Who needs retirement anyway. They had about 2 months to figure out how to be ready for the opening day of berry picking. Fortunately the former owner was able to give them some great tips on preparation; but it was a task much bigger than just the good doc and his wife could handle. Thank goodness the doc’s family was plentiful. With the help of a daughter-in-law (Paula), a daughter (Deb), a son (John), grandkids, and great-grandkids (I forget all their names), they went to work mowing, raking, painting, cleaning, sprucing, and sweating (it is Missouri you know). The bees came out in April and did their work, the rains followed and did their work, and the sun shown bright and made it all come together. Lo and behold on that first weekend of June, 2011, opening day arrived with a great harvest of sweet blueberries.
And so the Story Continues
And so the story continues. The Marti family is 4 years into running the farm and they are preparing for their 5th picking. There have been several improvements over the last couple of years such as a brand new irrigation system to better fight off the unpredictable Missouri weather. Nan and Paula have taken classes at a college in Springfield to better understand soil management, pH levels, and other things that will continue to make Brandywine Farm Blueberries the very best berries grown. Anywhere. In the world.
If you aren’t sure about that, make a trip to the Ozarks and find out for yourself. The good doc will be waiting to show you how to eat more berries than you put in your bucket. But Nan will be watching.
A FEW OF THOSE WHO HAVE MADE BRANDYWINE FARMS POSSIBLE
Our family atmosphere is what truly makes Brandywine Farm a special place. Though we originally started off as just Doc and Nan, our farm has expanded to fit each and every bit of the family
The Good Doc
Doc Marti, pictured here, is smiling because he only comes out to eat the blueberries!
Nan is the engine that keeps the farm running with a walkie-talkie on her hip.
Without the rest of the Marti family, the farm wouldn’t be what it is today…