TYLER, Texas — This quaint family farm tucked away in Tyler has been in business since 1984 selling everything from blueberries to Christmas trees and now a new family is taking over the business but that wasn't always the plan.
Stepping on to Tyler berry farm the smell of sweet strawberries greets you with a welcoming breeze. Addie and Marshall Wiggins are the new owners of the family-run farm, started by Marshall's grandfather more than 35 years ago.
"He was a firefighter and pouring concrete and brought blueberries here to the farm."
After a year of living off the land, the couple fell in love with farming. That is when they noticed the demand for local produce during the pandemic was high.
"Everything was shutting down and everyone was wanting to know where their food came from and the stores weren't able to supply it."
Selling blueberries has been successful for Marshall's grandfather but after checking out another local farm, the couple decided to branch out and try something sweeter on their own, you-pick strawberries.
"People just wanted things to do they were tired of being stuck inside and they can come out to the farm and just enjoy it out here so that's still the model that we like. I enjoy people being able to come out and enjoy some time here with the good Lord"
The Wiggins family said right now would be the best time to harvest those strawberries as they are currently the sweetest. From bloom to berry it takes 28 days with late Spring, early Summer being the peak time for strawberries in East Texas as later Summer days with more heat can cause stress on the red fruit.
Blueberries, however, do well during the mid to late Summer season so once you are done harvesting strawberries, you can visit the Wiggins farm for those crops next.
The Tyler Berry Farm will be open throughout the summer for it's 'you-pick' days or, you can call the farm ahead of time and they will pick them for you. For more details, visit their website or Facebook page