We plant ten varieties of strawberries, and you’ll see them labeled if you come out and Pick Your Own in our strawberry patch. With our different varieties, we enjoy a staggered fruition, which means that we have a longer strawberry season. Each variety bears fruit for perhaps a week or ten days most. But as one variety is falling off, another is just coming into ripeness. Strawberry season begins around the 10th of June, and continues until the beginning of July.
To keep our strawberry plants hardy and healthy, we pluck the blossoms off the new plants so they grow vigorously in their first year, dedicating their energy to plant growth rather than fruit. Then they are allowed to bear fruit in their second year, which is almost always the best and most productive year for a strawberry plant. The plants are allowed to be productive for a total of three years, before we plow them under. This is to ensure that that we offer only the youngest, most productive plants in the fields.
After all their hard work, our plants are rewarded with a winter nap. They get covered with at least half a foot of rye straw mulch after Thanksgiving. We grow our own, some 15 acres of rye, to bury all our strawberry rows in a protective blanket. It’s a two-tractors, two-man operation to get them all covered by early December.
Our strawberries are mulched in season with black plastic sheeting to keep weeds down and retain water in the soil. The plants are watered with sprinklers which also protects the plants during the late frosts of May, and can result in many sleepless nights as we must water the plants if the temperature dips below 32 degrees
Our Strawberries are available at our Farm Stand, our other retail locations, and are one of our most popular Pick Your Own crops. Strawberry picking is a favorite family outing for folks from near and far. Don’t forget to pick up some fresh biscuits at our Farm Stand to make a fresh strawberry shortcake, truly a perfect summer desert!