Makes sense, since we usually see the berries floating on top of the water. Wet Harvesting. On the eve of the first day of fall, farmers were hard at work harvesting the cranberries, which will become juices, jellies and breads this season. Dry harvesting is the best way for farmers to collect the freshest berries. In early September there are so many wild edibles, and they never made it to the top of my list. I have come to understand wild foods as a means of reconciling our industrialized relationship with the earth. This method of harvesting is used to supply the fresh fruit market. A lot of people think that cranberries grow under water. Cranberries are known for their tart flavor, long shelf-life, and beautiful color. Highbush Cranberries are one of the most confusing groups of edible plants in our region on account of poorly understood identifying characteristics and unimaginative common names. It belongs to the Heath, or Heather family (Ericaceae), which is a very widespread family of about 125 genera and about 3500 species! Growers walk with mechanical rakes trailing them. He started transplanting vines and spreading sand over them, starting a trend that caught on quickly. Captain Henry Hall, who fought in the Revolutionary War, discovered that his wild cranberries grew faster and the plants were more productive when sand blew in the wind over the plants. Therefore, wet harvested cranberries are used mostly for juice drinks, sauces, or as ingredients in other products. While picking cranberries with a motorized dry harvester is labor-intensive, it has an advantage. The Cranberry (genus Vaccinium) is native to the swamps and bogs of northeastern North America. Wet harvesting was a new innovation in the late '60s, but without a reliable source of water, which is critical to the process, Angley, his wife Dot, and their team of family and hard-working neighbors have "stayed with dry harvesting." The cranberry plant is […] Thimbleberries and wild plums dot the roadside, and the clusters of bright red highbush cranberry are visible from a distance. We share with you everything you need to know about growing cranberries, from the varieties, the tricks, pruning, pests to be aware of, harvesting and storing. Members of the family occur from polar regions to the tropics in both hemispheres. I’ve seen those bushes every fall for the past 6 years and never gotten around to harvesting. The bog is flooded with up to 18 inches of water the night before the berries are to be harvested. But, what we’re seeing is actually the result of wet harvesting. A lovely berry to grow, it does have a few tricks to it.