By Khasmer Rosemarie Tagsip
Dalaguete, Cebu – Considered as Cebu province’s little Baguio City, this town has been attracting local and foreign tourists because of its relatively cooler weather, refreshing environment and an unlikely gem – a strawberry farm.
Located in the mountain barangays of Maloray, Sergio’s Farm affords tourists the experience of picking and enjoying fresh strawberries, a major tourist attraction in the outskirts of Baguio City in Benguet in northern Luzon.
The three-hectare Sergio’s Farm has been growing strawberries for the last three years. It is Dalaguete’s first organic strawberry farm.
“The main purpose of this farm is to produce crops and vegetables the natural way. Tourism is just secondary,” said farm owner Engineer Fulgencio ‘Paul’ Revalde.
The farm is an hour away by motorcycle from the national road in barangays Poblacion.
One has to take a seven-minute walk on concrete and earthen pathways going down the valley to reach the farm.
Sergio’s Farm opened in 2012 but farm head, Teodorico Alcancia, started planting strawberries only in August, 2014. The farm also features other crops, vegetables, herbs, and spices.
But what really caught the attention of local tourists is the strawberry farm, which is unique in Cebu considering that the province is very tropical. The farm, however, is located in an upland barangay that has weather almost similar to Baguio City.
Alcancia started with just five strawberry seedlings from Benguet, which he bought from an exhibit in Cebu.
Currently, the farm has 28 tunnels, with each tunnel consisting of three to five plots of strawberries.
The farm is open to the public from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. on weekends only because weekdays are intended for production and plantation workers.
Entrance fee is R50 for adults. Children below three feet can enter free of charge.
Aside from personally picking strawberries for a fee, tourists can also buy homemade products such as strawberry jam, radish pickles, fresh juice, coco vinegar, and other farm produce.