For Taipei residents who feel like going for an early spring outing to pick strawberries, there is no need to travel all the way to Dahu Township in Miaoli County. Strawberries are also in season along Bishan Road in Taipei’s Neihu District. People in Taipei can just hop on the MRT or bus to enjoy picking strawberries without going out of town.
According to the Taipei City Government’s Department of Economic Development (DOED), strawberries have been planted in Neihu District for nearly three decades. The strawberry season lasts from December until the end of May. Unlike farms in Miaoli County’s Duhu Township, where strawberries are planted out in the open, most of the strawberry orchards in Neihu grow fruit in greenhouses or under cold frames, so people can still experience the enjoyment of picking fruit even when it rains. A good number of farmers have chosen to diversify their operations so that a variety of other fruits and vegetables, such as carrots and cherry tomatoes, are also available for harvesting. There are several tourism and leisure-oriented strawberry orchards located in areas along Bishan Road and Dahu Street.
Hsu San-chi, the owner of Fresh Farm in Neihu, says his strawberry yield is down by 30 percent to 40 percent compared to the same period in past years, having been affected by the overcast, wet, cold, and gloomy weather in Taipei this winter. Nevertheless, the quality of the strawberries has not been affected, and neither has the price, which, at NT$250 a catty (600g), is also similar to previous years. Organic strawberries are more precious, however, selling for as much as NT$340 a catty. For more information, visit the DOED’s Web site at www.doed.taipei.gov.tw.
1. hop v.
跳上 (tiao4 shang4)
例: You can just hop on a ferry to travel between England and France or Belgium in about an hour and a half.
2. yield n.
產量 (chan3 liang4)
例: Favorable weather has produced a good yield of fine-quality tea in Sri Lanka this year.
3. precious adj.
高價的 (kao1 jia4 de5)
例: Watermelons are very precious in Finland because they have to be shipped in from warmer countries.
(Liberty Times, Translated by Lin Ya-ti)