Winter Bog

Cranberry Bog in January partially flooded; you can see the ice shards forming in the foreground

A vivid childhood memory I have is of digging through bins of old ice skates for a pair that fits, getting bundled up, and driving to a nearby cranberry bog to ice skate on the frozen surface.  Skating on cranberry bogs is a lot safer than skating on ponds because the water isn’t very deep.

Cranberry bogs are flooded in the winter to protect the cranberry plants from extreme cold.  Even a thick layer of ice will rarely reach the water closest to the plants.  Here are a couple activities that keep cranberry growers busy in the winter…

  • Sanding the bogs which has several beneficial effects for the cranberry plants including stimulating growth, improving drainage, and protecting against weeds, insects, and fungi (check out the video below).
  • Because there are fewer than 1000 cranberry growers in North America there is not a big enough demand for commerically manufactured equiptment so growers spend the winters designing, building, and maintaining equipment.

For more info visit: Cape Cod Cranberry Growers’ Association

This video explains the sanding process over ice on Nantucket bogs and how sand’s benefits were discovered…

The following is a list of health benefits associated with cranberries (especially raw whole berries)

  • Cranberries can help prevent and treat UTI’s and stomach ulcers.  They have properties that block bacteria from attaching lining of stomach and urinary tract.
  • They have nutrients and mechanisms which have cancer preventing benefits
  • They have antinflammatory benefits for the cardiovascular system, oral health, and digestive tract
  • They contain antioxidants which combat cell damaging free radicals in our environment
  • Cranberries can help lower the bad cholesterol and increase the good
  • Small studies have shown cranberries can boost your immune system making you less susceptible to colds and other illness


Considering all the health benefits of cranberries how about adding some to your salsa for your Superbowl party!  Here is a recipe for cranberry salsa.  I just made it today and it is so yummy!!!  I used dried cranberries which are sweetened but if you are able to get a hold of fresh or even frozen add about a half cup of sugar per 12 ounces of berries (cranberries are not naturally sweet).

Cranberry salsa

Cranberry Salsa 


  • 2 large tomatoes chopped
  • 1 large bell pepper chopped
  • juice of one lime
  • half a 9.5 ounce container of sweetened dried cranberries
  • 4 chili peppers chopped with seeds removed
  • half a bunch of cilantro chopped
  • one bunch of green onions chopped

Directions: Combine about half of the ingredients in blender and blend until smooth.  Add remaining half of ingredients and blend until your desired chunkiness.  Put half in a bowl for serving right away and half in a jar and refrigerate for another time.  Serve with corn chips.

It is also great on turkey sandwiches!

save remaining salsa in a jar








I'm a practical mom inspired by nature & I enjoy sharing ideas that encourage kids' innate curiosity & creativity. Interested in subscribing? Check out the blue box at the top of my sidebar. I'm also a wannabe author/illustrator & product designer by day. Let's connect! If you purchase through my Amazon links I get a small commission at no additional cost to you (thanks for supporting Doodles and Jots)! And remember to always credit your source here & elsewhere on the internet.


  1. Ann – THESE are my very favorite kinds of posts. You taught me so much in a fairly brief amount of space. I LOVED the video, I love cranberries, and think it’s cool that you’ve put together a beautiful salsa recipe to boot.

    THANKS for one of my best reading experiences this entire NaBloPoMo!
    ~ RDK

  2. Wow, this is great!
    I had no idea about the cranberry bogs. I decided I’d never skate on a pond, but cranberry bogs sound safe.
    Sauce sounds yummy, might have to acquire some cranberries to try it!

  3. I love cranberries and had no clue how they were grown. This is great! The salsa sounds yummy, never thought about cranberries but yeah, kinda like putting mango in salsa too, a little sweetness.

  4. I always forget about cranberries after Xmas and Thanksgiving. And cranberry salsa or chutney is so good with so many things. I’ll have to try your recipe. It looks delightful.

    • Yes, it is really like a chutney – it is good – my kids ALMOST like it. I really wish I had bought a bag of fresh ones a couple weeks ago when they still had them – then you can control the sugar. They are so good for you!

    • Fun & no worries about falling through! So good for you! I want to go get some frozen berries and try adding them to more foods.

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