August 18, 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, […]

Cold Climate Strawberry Farming Now Available for FREE on

Strawberry farming can be successfully accomplished on a commercial scale throughout much of Minnesota, and strawberries are also well suited for small-scale and part-time farming operations. Although the number of acres in Minnesota is relatively small, the value per acre can provide a significant amount of revenue for Minnesota growers. Now, breaking into commercial strawberry […]

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 […]

Feedback Sessions at MOSES Conference

After reading more about Cold Climate Strawberry Farming, are you interested in checking it out? While it’s not quite ready to be released to the public yet, we are doing feedback sessions at the MOSES Organic Farming Conference on February 28 in La Crosse, WI. We are looking for feedback from people with all levels […]

Cold Climate Strawberry Farming: A Guide to Growing and Selling Strawberries in Cold Climates

Thank you to everyone who responded to our survey on growing strawberries last September. It gave us some great information about what current growers think is important to know as well as what new growers are really wondering about. Strawberries can be successfully grown on a commercial scale throughout much of Minnesota and are also […]

Sweet Success

During the late summer/fall picking season at the WCROC site, we tasted a noticeably sweet strawberry.  We randomly took brix levels during the picking season of all six cultivars in the low tunnel and non-low tunnel treatments.  The results showed an average brix level of 7.6 between late July and early October in both low […]

Individual berry weight for day-neutral strawberries

As part of this project, we calculated individual fruit size, in grams, of each cultivar by randomly choosing 20 berries per treatment at each harvest.  At the WCROC, the average berry weight (g) across cultivars within the low tunnel was 15.56 g while the open field average was 14.27 g.  At the St. Paul site the […]