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Friday, March 5, 2010

FARM WAYS -- COUNTRY HOMEMADE BLACKBERRY ARBOR

NATURAL BARK COVERED WOODEN BLACKBERRY ARBOR
Debbie and Kenny Hylton have raised 14 acres of tobacco on their land for many years. They are family farmers, farming in Madison County, Kentucky.It being one of the states that was part of the tobacco buy-out imposed by Congress in 2004. Today instead of fields of tobacco around every roadway, one finds the fields lying fallow waiting for other types of crops to someday be planted. The Hylton's came up with the idea of blackberries and this 2010 year will be their first crop. After their years of tobacco farming and the subsequent monetary drop of tobacco, Debbie and Kenny recently decided to take their life-long knowledge of farming and raise a different crop. Debbie said, "We've always farmed so we wanted to get started again with some type of growing."

CLOSE-UP OF THE LATERAL SUPPORTS OF THE BLACKBERRY ARBOR
The initial start-up idea produced a blackberry arbor built with branches collected from the trees on their property. Kenny left the bark on the branches that he used to build the arbor -- the lateral supports as well as the upright posts. This new arbor has an earthy, natural look and the cost was right. But the arbor was not large enough to produce a selling crop -- and a selling crop is what Debbie and Kenny had in mind.

ORIGINAL GRAPE ARBOR ON WHICH KENNY ATTACHED HIS FIRST BLACKBERRY ARBOR
So, Kenny did not stop with just a small arbor. Last fall he built trellises on his farm acreage for future blackberry crops. Both of the Hylton's look forward to possibly selling blackberries at farm markets.

SCENIC VIEW ACROSS THE FIELD OF BLACKBERRY TRELLIS SUPPORTS MADE OF SAWN LUMBER
Kenny continued with his new crop idea by building trellises in the fields that once held tobacco. Right now they stand ready to accept the berry bushes that will climb upward on them. I heard a phrase recently that seems to suit the farmers hit by the tobacco buy-out -- you strive to survive.

As I was getting ready to leave, Debbie, with a big smile on her face said, "Come back later to see the blackberries twined in the trellises and full of berries." And I smiled back and said, "Thank you, I would love too."

6 comments:

  1. What a labor of love! Will they be doing a "you-pick" in addition to selling, themselves? Their rustic arbor appears to be made mostly from locust which will make it last many years. But what a job they have done! Amazing and beautiful!

    Elora

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  2. Thanks for your comments -- I believe you are right, I think it is locust, a great tree for providing fence stumps in this area. Yes, I too was astounded at all the work the Hylton family had put into this new endeavor! -- barbara

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  3. Elora -- Oh, I didn't answer your question about "you pick." At this time they did not mention a "you pick' option. -- barbara

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  4. generic viagra, I would venture to say you are probably correct as locust grows profusely in this area and is used for such things as fence posts etc where durable wood is needed. Thanks for the comment -- barbara

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  5. Oh my, it looks like they plan to grow a lot of blackberries. I grow blackberries, too, but only two rows of them, and that is all I can handle. I wish them luck in their new venture.

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  6. Janet, They have a beautifully organized "orchard" of new blackberries that should produce lots of berries. -- barbara

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