Certified organic blueberries

Published 7:00 am Friday, July 18, 2014

LOCALLY GROWN: Ronnie Coleman, who runs the local Blue Tara Blueberry farm in Millard, poses with some of his bushes. Photo by Jeremy Pittari

LOCALLY GROWN: Ronnie Coleman, who runs the local Blue Tara Blueberry farm in Millard, poses with some of his bushes.
Photo by Jan Penton Miller

By Jan Penton Miller

Item Correspondent


Blue Tara Organic Blueberry Farm is UDSA certified organic and located off of Savannah Millard Road in Millard.  The u-pick season began at sunrise on June 1 and ends at sundown on July 31.

Interested parties can simply follow the signs from the main road down a long winding drive to the barn nearby the blueberry fields.

Gallon buckets are available for measuring the delicious, nutrient rich blue orbs.  A full gallon of these antioxidant packed berries is sold for ten dollars.  A mailbox waits for customers to pay for their purchase. Customers drive to the farm and make their way to the blueberry fields.  After picking all the berries they want, customers simply go back to the barn, place their berries in their own bag or other container they brought with them and put their money in the mailbox on the premises. This business is run on the honor system.

For those who do not have the time or inclination to pick their own berries, fresh or frozen berries are also available for purchase.  One gallon of frozen berries is $20.  One pound of frozen berries sells for $5.  Five pounds of fresh berries sells for the price of $20.  Customers may call (601) 795-0034 for availability and pricing of any size.

Physically challenged customers may call in advance and will be provided with a golf cart.  The cart will be waiting at the barn to allow all people regardless of disability to enjoy picking their own berries.  There is plenty of room to maneuver between the rows in the golf cart.  A dry week would be a good time to visit for those who may need to use a cart.

When a customer visits Blue Tara they go through the double doors on the left side of the barn.  Bungi cords are provided so that pickers can put the cord around their waist and hook into their bucket so that both hands are free for picking.  The blackboard on the wall tells where to go and what field is open.  It also gives other pertinent information.

Blue Tara has several varieties of rabbiteye blueberry bushes.  The name Blue Tara originated from owner Mandy McCormick’s love of the movie “Gone With the Wind.” Her many pets are aptly named Scarlett, Rhett Butler, Prissy and Tara.

Blue Tara is the first blueberry farm in the state of Mississippi to be awarded its organic certification.  The farm contains 25 acres of blueberry bushes and is maintained by McCormick’s grandson, Ronnie Coleman, who attends college classes and works in the blueberry fields.

No chemicals of any sort are used on the blueberry bushes.

“Pure water from Mother Nature and sunshine from the heavens make the bushes thrive.  Most importantly the good Lord sends us unbelievable amounts of berries. Blue Tara is a beautiful place to come out and pick your own berries.  As for those rockers at the barn, they are for all to linger and enjoy the day the Lord has blessed us with,” McCormick said.