February 25, 2018

Berries at Tangletown

Tangletown Farm is located in Plato, MN, along with its sister companies Tangletown Gardens and Wise Acre Eatery.  We are happy to partner with them as a collaborating site for our day-neutral low tunnel strawberry project in 2017.

Based on their experience with this growing system, they shared with us a few of their successes and challenges:

Successes:

  • The low tunnel system was the most productive method for growing strawberries at Tangletown, as compared to three other methods.  In both quantity and quality, the low tunnel day-neutral strawberries out-performed berries from the other growing methods.
  • The white on black plastic mulch produced significantly more strawberries than the black biodegradable plastic (Bio360).
  • We had very little insect damage, and as of mid-August, had not applied any pesticide.

Challenges:

  • We did experience some minor damage to the plastic that goes over the hoops of the low tunnel.  Most of this was due to the fact that we had not rolled up the sides properly at installation, which caused pooling of water.
  • From a timing standpoint, we did not mow the cover crop early enough which may have prevented the strawberry plants from getting full sun for part of the summer.  It also meant that we had to go through later and hand pull the weeds that were growing up against the plastic mulch, which is quite labor intensive.