Maine Organic Farmers and Gardeners Association
Pollinator Resources

Pollinator Resources

The Lost Art of Growing Blueberries With Fire

July 6, 2020 – By Luke Fater, Atlas Obscura – By the time Europeans first made contact with the Passamaquoddy tribe along the rugged coastline of what is now Maine, fire had been an agricultural tool there for centuries. Between summertime harvests, tribes burned the unforgiving, rocky terrain from which blueberries sprung forth, a custom that encouraged the new growth of what was, to many Indigenous people, a sacred fruit. Colonizers carried on the stark tradition, and burning blueberry fields by hand, with help from family, friends, and neighbors, became as much a fixture of the coastal Maine lifestyle as blueberries became of a new American diet.