Cranberry Wet-Harvesting

My husband and I found a good place for running and walking at Pitt Lake. The lake was formed thousands of years ago after the Wisconsin glaciation caused a deep trough; after the initial glacial retreat, a saltwater fjord formed, which evolved into this tidal fjord lake. There’s a gravel path starting at the park entrance, and the trail seems to go around at least part of the lake. We’re looking forward to both running and canoeing at the lake! But this coming weekend brings rain.

Courtesy Wiki Commons

Anyway, on the way to this lake over the past weekend, we noticed some cranberry harvesting at a flooded area to the side of the road. It is Thanksgiving this weekend for Canadians, and the sight of men and women in gumboots and rain gear wading around the area harvesting cranberries was one of the neatest things I’ve seen for a while. The process of flooding cranberries in the autumn is called wet-harvesting. Areas are flooded, a harvester is run through the cranberries, and the cranberries collect on the water. Because they float, harvesting is an easy process. Workers corral the berries into part of the water and then skim them up. I had never seen anything like it before and was quite impressed!

By the way, according to Eco Ri, cranberry farming is being affected by climate change. Cranberries need all the seasonal changes typically seen in some parts of the world (such as New England) in order to grow correctly. Warmer temperatures, lack of ice, more frequent storms, and other factors will detrimentally affect cranberry farming.

Well, tomorrow morning I will end my week 3 of c25K program. So far, so good. I’m averaging runs of three miles a week, with a little more than that briskly walking. Each week ramps up in intensity until you hit a straight run of 5K, which is just over three miles. I think if I can do it, I will be thrilled. I also will move on to 10K if all goes well. Certainly, running this week will help offset a big meal on Saturday, though, I have to admit I am not a big fan of cranberries!

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