My Papa has been a rancher his whole life, until he and my Nana moved to Eastern Oregon near the coast and he took up cranberry farming. He is the main man running the bogs outside Bandon with his cousins and a few helpers. Since I was little I remember coming to work with him on our visits to Oregon, stopping off at a diner for breakfast on the way. So I thought I'd share a few pictures, as a lot of people don't realise where their cranberries come from.
The berries are grown in these giant sand pits called 'bogs' and grow pretty close to the ground. They are sprayed and watered regularly, and when it's time to harvest, they flood the bogs and the berries float to the top. Sometimes they have to go around knocking the bushes a bit to encourage stubborn cranberries. During the winter my papa spends more time at the bogs than at home as they have to be really careful of frost. They have detectors set up everywhere that alert him of any dangers, and I think he even still gets pages from it.
The bogs are set in a pretty location with mountains surrounding it. Last time I was there they were digging a couple new pits, so I'm sure by now they are all set up and planted. Their cranberries are sent all over the place, my favourite way of eating them is dried. They send the cranberries off to a company, and then buy them back and sell them on again. I'm glad I've got an in with the whole business, as dried cranberries in England seem to be very pricey! I got a giant bag last time I was there and it's still going strong. I use them a lot in baking and in my oatmeal.
Have you ever been to any cranberry bogs? Does anyone have any recipes with dried cranberries I should try?