November 24, 2017

Mid-September Harvest

Even though cooler night temperatures in mid-September caused a decrease in fruit yield, the quality, appearance, size and flavor of these day-neutral strawberries remains excellent, as documented in our September 18 harvest:   Harvest began in early August for day-neutral varieties in both the low-tunnel and non-low tunnel systems, with two pickings per week.  The […]

Western flower thrips causes damage to non-low tunnel fruit

During the August 2014 harvest period, we noticed fruit damage from western flower thrips.  Western flower thrips are slender, very small insects, about 0.03 inch long when mature.  Adults have feathery wings and vary in color from yellow to dark brown; nymphs are white or yellowish with small dark eyes. Thrips feed on strawberry blossoms, […]

Twospotted spider makes an appearance in low-tunnel system

Twospotted spider mite damage was detected on the leaves of day-neutral strawberry plants under the low-tunnel system in late July.  While the damage was slight, it certainly came as a surprise since we did not experience this type of insect problem in 2013 with our low-tunnel system.  Typically, the twospotted spider mite is found in […]

Removing flower blossoms from day-neutral strawberries

In 2013 and 2014, we removed flower blossoms from day-neutral cultivars in early, mid and late June for optimum production.  Recently, we came across an experiment that shares some new information on when and why you should remove day-neutral flowers. University of Maryland Professors and Extension Educators released a publication in September of 2009 suggesting […]

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 24, 2014 beginning at 5:15 pm and again at 7:30 pm, running one hour in length each time. The […]

Low tunnel construction for use with day-neutral strawberries

As the weather permits, we are beginning construction of our low-tunnel system in preparation for another growing season of day-neutral strawberries.  For detailed instructions on how to construct a raised bed, low-tunnel system for strawberry use, please refer to our Construction video, or visit the Construction post from May 2013. 

Gearing up for another growing season

We are gearing up for another exciting year of day-neutral low tunnel strawberry farming.  The growing season of 2013 provided us with valuable opportunities to learn how this system can work for strawberry growers in the Upper Midwest.  Based on what we learned, we are heading into our second year with a few tweaks and […]

Looking ahead to the 2014 growing season

 Now that all of the data has been collected and analyzed for our 2013 growing season, we look forward to a 2014-2015 growing season!  Hear Steve’s final thoughts on the project for 2013.      

What we learned

With one growing season under our belt, we now have a better idea of where we need to focus our research efforts in year two in order to improve the low tunnel system.  Watch as Steve Poppe shares his thoughts and ideas for improvements for the 2014 growing season.        

The economics of growing low tunnel strawberries

   Establishment costs for creating a low tunnel system are important to consider for any strawberry grower.  Based on our 2013 growing season, we developed the following table (see below) using our actual costs for creating a low tunnel day-neutral strawberry system.  Establishment Costs Variable Costs per 100 feet Fertilizer $11.67 Fertigation injector (2 gal) $73.00 Pesticides […]