Posted by: littlehouseonthebigisland | November 24, 2013

Endless Rounds

We are still picking coffee.  We just finished a round, but it took so long,  by the time we were finished it was time to start again. I’ve been picking for nine years, but I feel like I am just beginning to get the hang of it.  Folks who grow up here can pick hundreds of pounds a day. I’d be lucky to fill one burlap bag, about 80 pounds.  I don’t have the technique.  When a pro is on a tree, it looks like a tornado.  The tree is twitching and shaking and in a few minutes it’s nothing but green. Pros use a stick with a rope or a chain to pull the tree over.  They stand on the rope or chain and pick with both hands.  Sometimes with really thick gloves.

I use bare fingers and no stick.  If the branches are low enough I pick with both hands. What James explained, that I finally really heard and understood, is to start at the top of a branch and go down with both hands with fingers probing.  The really ripe cherry falls, automatically, into the bucket strapped around my waist. The green cherry is tougher, it stays fixed, on the branch.

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