I just planted 3 blueberry bushes, 3 raspberry bushes, 2 packages of sunflower seed, 4 clematis and anyone who knows me will take the bet that they won’t survive the summer with me as their gardener. Every year, try as I might to grow some kind of fruit or vegetable bearing plant some major disaster (which is never my fault) claims them as victims of my brown thumb. Too much water (I forgot to turn off the hose) too little water (remember last year’s drought?), bugs (icky, won’t even touch them) or fungus (I had no clue what that funky stuff was or where it came from) always seem to get in the way of me growing my own “stuff”.
While I’m going to have to wait for the berries to actually grow and produce something other than amusement for my family and friends, I’m going to content myself with utilizing the blueberries, raspberries and black berries that are in season right now and available for about a third the cost of my kids college tuition.
One of the biggest complaints I get from readers when utilizing berries in a muffin or other bakery treat is that they seem to sink to the bottom of the pan making. Most of the time it’s because the batter is too thin and the berries are heavier than the batter or the batter has been over mixed (too much air in the batter) causing the batter to fall and taking the berries with it. You can mitigate the drop of the berries by coating them with flour before stirring them into the batter or instead of mixing them into the batter spread half of the batter in the pan or muffin pan, place the coated berries and top then cover with the remain batter and placing a few berries on top.
While hope springs eternal I’m hedging my bet that nothing will grow and buying tons of berries while they’re in season. I’m using as many as I can and freezing the rest for those fall and winter days when a taste of summer is what gets me through until I can replant my berries and start the cycle all over again.