Windmill Farms growing blueberries

Published 7:00 am Friday, July 10, 2015

LAST OF THE SEASON: Windmill Farms LLC owner Jerry Kirby inspects the remaining blueberries of the season.  Photo by Cassandra Favre

LAST OF THE SEASON: Windmill Farms LLC owner Jerry Kirby inspects the remaining blueberries of the season.
Photo by Cassandra Favre

Throughout the summer in Pearl River County, the sweet scent of ripe blueberries permeates the air at various blueberry farms and home gardens.
One source of that scent can be found at Windmill Farms LLC in Picayune.
When former educators Jerry and Nikki Kirby moved to Picayune from Texas in 1981, the pair had never tasted a blueberry.
After 1969’s Hurricane Camille wiped out the area’s tung nut industry, people began planting and harvesting blueberries, Jerry Kirby said.
“We attended a meeting about planting and planted our first couple of bushes during the summer of 1987,” Jerry Kirby said. “However, birds got to our first planting. That next year we planted two acres and everything went wrong.”
Since 2005, the Kirby’s blueberry farm has grown to encompass 13 acres and features about 8,000 bushes.
At Windmill Farms, guests can pick their own blueberries or have the staff pick them, hence the name “You Pick, We Pick.”
It costs $8 per gallon and $1.50 per pound for “You Pick” and $15 per gallon and $2.50 per pound for “We Pick,” the website states.
Frozen blueberries are often available during the season and cost $10 per gallon, the website states.
The Kirbys also package blueberries and send them to the Miss Lou Blueberry Growers Co-Op, Jerry Kirby said, who distribute the tasty fruit to retailers.
The farm is inspected by the United States Department of Agriculture and staff are certified in food safety, Jerry Kirby said.
Although each harvest year is different, a typical harvest season usually begins the last week of April or beginning of May and lasts through July 4, Jerry Kirby said.
Each year, the blueberry growers showcase their crop and Nikki Kirby’s homemade blueberry jam at Poplarville’s Blueberry Jubilee. Next year, jam will be sold at the farm.
The Kirbys said they enjoy running the farm.
“We were both raised in the city and one day, he decided he wanted to be country,” Nikki Kirby said. “I also enjoy eating the blueberries and making pies and cakes.”
The Kirbys also make homemade blueberry juice, which they mix with pure orange or apple juice.
Jerry Kirby said blueberries are a fruit that can be grown without the use of chemicals and are nutritious.
“They taste good and are full of antioxidants,” Jerry Kirby said. “The water, sun and soil are good here. Nothing beats a big dollop of vanilla ice cream with fresh blueberries.”
The farm is open to the public from early May to July 4, Jerry Kirby said.
Windmill Farms LLC is located at 69 Homer Spiers Rd. For more information, contact the Kirbys at 601-799-7243 and visit the website at

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