On the Family Farm
By David E. Metcalf
How many strawberries have you eaten already?” my brother Loren inquired.
“None,” I said, and tried to cover the stains around my mouth.
When I was a toddler in the early 1960s, my family grew more than five acres of strawberries near Homedale. Compared to the Pacific Coast states, Idaho isn’t known for growing strawberries, but my parents discovered a brand of strawberry plant that would grow well here, as it could survive the harsher winter climate to produce delicious mid-sized berries each June.
During winter they browsed through nursery catalogs while we stayed warm by the oil stove in the living room, usually with a cat snuggled up in somebody’s lap. Outside it was foggy, with several inches of snow on the ground and icicles hanging from our shingle roof, which had no rain gutter. Breaking off icicles and throwing them like spears was a popular winter pastime, but the family looked forward to the warmer weather of spring and the gardening season.