Local blueberry farm growing in new hands, with roots in family


The Kingsley Farm has changed hands this season, but is still operating under the same name, with bushes of ripe blueberries and plans for upcoming seasons.

The Collins family bought the farm from the previous owner, Meghan Morgan. Morgan, or “Ms. Meghan,” had restored the overgrown farm into the groomed, blueberry-abundant farm it is today, changing the name from Messix to Kingsley Farm around three years ago. Morgan, a retired social-worker, sold the farm in December.

The Collins family isn’t entirely new to the neighborhood. They have lived on the buffalo farm down the road for six years. Dale Collins works full-time in the poultry equipment business. He purchased the farm from his neighbor, in part, because his nephew Collin, an eighth-grader, has been working on Kingsley Farm for around two years.

Collin has a familiarity with the farm, able to decipher between the varieties of the 50-to-100-year blueberry bushes, as well as tell some of the farm’s future — already, there’s been a change: is a new kind of blueberry available on the farm this season, called “Pink Lemonade.”

Also available at the farm is fresh buffalo meat, soft-serve ice cream, flowers and produce from Collin’s garden. There is also a refrigerator stocked full with blueberries hand-picked for those who want to reap the benefits without the effort of picking the fruit themselves, and some days there are even freshly-baked blueberry muffins or pies.

For the fall season, a “U-Pick” pumpkin patch is in the works, with the pumpkins set to be planted around 100 days prior to harvesting.

And, to fill out that future outlook, Collins and Collin said they hope to grow the offerings of the farm as much as possible. They plan to put in more varieties of crops, such as raspberries and strawberries. Collins also plans to make this an even-more family friendly farm, incorporating his wife’s daycare and petting zoo, with an already designated area where it could go.

As of this point in the season, the Kingsley Farm has not sprayed any pesticides on the blueberry bushes. Instead, they rely on weed killer for plant pests and raise guinea fowl, which act as a “guard dog” and an “organic way” to keep spiders, ticks, fleas and flies away.

The Kingsley Farm is also set to have a longer blueberry season than last year, when it ended early, on July 22. Blueberries are expected to be pickable into August this year, due to the farm’s newly-installed irrigation system, which runs through the high-bush blueberries. Already the farm has seen some busy days for U-Pick — especially Saturdays, when they have sold upwards of 30 to 50 quarts of blueberries daily.

Kingsley Farm is located at 24349 Blueberry Lane, Frankford. They are open from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. Monday through Friday, 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturday, and 7 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Sunday.

 

By Rachel Clair

Point Intern