Blueberry Day at the State Farmers Market
Many blueberry lovers have been worried that the late March freezes might foul up the state’s blueberry crops, but North Carolina Department of Agriculture officials are assuring consumers that farmers anticipate plenty of later varieties to be available.
“This has been an unusual growing season for local blueberry growers, but that’s exactly why they plant so many different varieties,” said Agriculture Commissioner Steve Troxler, in a press release. “The quality and quantity of later varieties should be good through July.”
That’s great news for those planning to hit Blueberry Day at the State Farmers Market in Raleigh on Thursday, June 15. Special events that day run from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. and will feature free samples of blueberry desserts (plus ice cream), free blueberry recipes and of course, lots of fresh blueberries for sale.
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Some N.C. blueberry facts for you, courtesy of the agriculture department: North Carolina is the sixth-largest producer of blueberries in the nation, with about 8,000 acres of blueberries grown in the state. In 2015, blueberry production was valued at $77.9 million. The majority of blueberries grown in the state are sold to retail stores – so when you’re shopping, look for “North Carolina” on the label.
Learn more about North Carolina blueberries at ncblueberries.com.
Make an edible raised garden
Home Depot offers lots of free DIY classes that teach helpful skills to gardeners and home-improvement fans.
Here are a few interesting ones that are coming up soon. The same classes are usually offered at all local Home Depot locations, but visit homedepot.com/workshops to verify classes and register, and to check out other workshops not listed here.
▪ Make a concrete serving tray, 6:30-8 p.m., Thursday, June 15. Watch a Home Depot associate demonstrate how to measure and cut wood and then mix concrete to create a serving tray with attached handles. You’ll also see the safe use of common project tools, including a circular saw, drill and sanding block.
▪ Edible raised garden, 10-11:30 a.m., Saturday, June 17. They’ll walk you through the many varieties of edible plants that can thrive in your space and help you select plants that work for your climate and tastes. Then you’ll be able to learn about the products and tools you’ll need to care for your garden.
▪ Installing wall tile, 10-11:30 a.m., Saturday, June 24. This workshop will show you the tools and supplies you need to install wall tile. An associate will help you develop a plan for tiling – including preparing the wall before you start – and then show you how to mortar and seal it.
Take a honey bee hive tour at the North Carolina Botanical Garden’s Carolina Campus Community Garden in Chapel Hill from 2-3 p.m. on Saturday, June 24.
The tour, in honor of National Pollinator Week, will be led by bee hobbyist Anne Cabell. It’s free, but registration is required in advance through ncbg.unc.edu/calendar (click the calendar and select June).
Carolina Campus Community Garden is located at 200 Wilson St., Chapel Hill.