March 24, 2017

Changes Coming to the Fruit Research Blog

New and exciting things are always happening in fruit production research and outreach at the University of Minnesota. The same is happening with this site. Soon, you will find fruit production information at the University of Minnesota Extension site. Our updated home grower information is already there, and the commercial production info will be there soon, revised […]

End of day neutral strawberry season

Developing strawberry flowers are fragile things. They are susceptible to insect pressures, fungal pressures and climatic pressures as well. Even though our plants are categorically day-neutral, they aren’t immune to unfavorable temperatures, and one little spat of sub-freezing nights can decide that your season is over. That happened at the St Paul site this week. […]

Rhizoctonia (Black Root Rot) on low tunnel strawberries

Our WCROC, Morris site had an unexpected disease pop up – Rhizoctonia, or black root rot.  We first noticed some strawberry plants wilting.  Then the underside of the leaves turned purplish, and curled up.  Eventually, the crown of the plants died. In order to properly diagnose, we collected plant and soil samples and sent into the […]

A visit with a low tunnel strawberries collaborator

As part of this project, we have several collaborating farms that are also growing day-neutral strawberries using a low tunnel system.  One of those collaborating farms is Prairie Horizons Farm  (Luverne and Mary Jo Forbord) in Starbuck, MN.  Steve had the opportunity to visit with them recently about their experience in the 2015 growing season. […]

Leaf spot disease

We have noticed slight leaf spot disease on the Albion day-neutral strawberry leaves within the last two months.  However, the disease pressure has increased in the last two weeks in the non-low tunnel plot.  As you can see below, the leaf spot is much more prevalent on the non low-tunnel plant leaves than in the […]

Day-neutral flower and runner removal

For our day-neutral strawberry project, we chose to remove flowers and runners early in the growing season, thus putting all of the plants growing energy into producing fruit.  We first removed flowers and cut runners in late May, again in early June and, finally in early July.  Timing of early July flower removal should provide […]

Low Tunnel Tour

The University of Minnesota (U of MN) and the West Central Research and Outreach Center (WCROC), Morris, invite you to a tour of our day-neutral low tunnel strawberry plot.  Tours will be held on Thursday, July 30, 2015 beginning at 5:15 pm and again at 7:15 pm, running one hour in length each time. Low […]

Frost damage in day-neutral strawberries

The official air temperature at the West Central Research and Outreach Center on October 4, 2014 was 32 degrees.  Even with the air temperature at 32, the temperature recorded in the low tunnel system was 34 degrees, which prevented the day neutral strawberry flowers and fruit from frost damage.  By comparison, the non low tunnel […]

Spotted wing drosophila

With any fruit crop, it is important to monitor and routinely check for insects and disease.  Once such insect that can be especially devastating to a strawberry crop is the spotted wing drosophila (SWD). In 2014, we changed our trap cup design.  We used a clear plastic quart-size cup, with lid, as seen below.  We […]

Strawberry leaf spot disease

In September, we noticed strawberry leaf spot in the non-low tunnel treatment, but not in the low tunnel.  This occurred at both the St. Paul and Morris locations.  For reasons unknown to us, the leaf spot affected only the non-low tunnel but not the low tunnel treatments.