Strawberries have a long season; When Are Strawberries In Season? Answer: the late spring and extend through early summer, although some varieties may start to produce fruit earlier or later.
The main strawberry picking period for the strawberry peak season at most farms is from mid-May to mid-June.
In colder climates, strawberries can be harvested as early as April, while in warmer areas, they are ready through July and sometimes even into August.
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🍓 Regional Peak Strawberry Seasons
The majority of strawberry varieties produce their highest yield during the spring, earning the name June-Bearing strawberries. Another type, everbearing strawberries, are known for extended fruiting periods, allowing for several harvests throughout the growing season.
In contrast to June-bearing strawberries, which provide a single, large crop from late spring to early summer, everbearing strawberries offer smaller but more frequent yields from spring until early fall.
Depending on local weather conditions, strawberries are in season slightly earlier or later in various parts of the US.
For example, northern states like New York and Michigan usually experience peak picking in early June, while southern states such as California and Florida often see the season starting in late May or early June.
Term to Know: Everbearing strawberries: a different type of strawberry plant known for their extended fruiting period, allowing for multiple harvests throughout the growing season.
Unlike June-bearing strawberries, which produce a single, large crop in spring to early summer, everbearing strawberries yield smaller but more frequent crops from spring to early fall.
Day-neutral strawberries, a different variety, may produce fruit for several months throughout the summer and into the fall.
🍓 Strategies for Getting the Freshest Strawberries
One of the best ways to ensure you’re getting the freshest organic strawberry is to go directly to a local farm when the peak season begins that have strawberry picking.
This way, you can select only ripe berries and ensure they haven’t been over-picked or in a refrigerator for too long. You can find strawberry farms near you by using an online search engine or checking with your local Cooperative Extension office.
U-Pick Strawberry Farmers
Visit a type of strawberry farm called U-pick farms, sometimes referred to as "pick-your-own" farmers, run local farm that allows customers to visit and pick strawberry from their produce. By doing so, you pick your own strawberry to get the freshest fruits available.
These farmers are responsible for cultivating and maintaining the crops, offering guests a distinctive, hands-on experience. As a result, visitors can choose and gather the freshest produce at their convenience.
U-pick farms frequently encourage a connection between consumers and the origin of their food while supporting sustainable agriculture and the local economy.
Checking local farms to find out when strawberries are in season in your area.
California Strawberry Season
California's strawberry season is a significant event for both locals and visitors, as the state is known for producing high-quality, flavorful strawberries. The season typically spans from January through November, with peak production occurring between April and June.
Thanks to its Mediterranean climate and fertile soil, California is the largest strawberry producer in the United States, accounting for around 90% of the nation's total strawberry output.
The state's long coastline, temperate weather, and abundant sunshine create ideal growing conditions for strawberries.
Several popular strawberry varieties are grown in California, including the Chandler, Seascape, and Albion. Each variety offers a unique flavor profile and appearance, making California strawberries sought-after by consumers worldwide.
🍓 How Can You Tell If Strawberries Are Ripe?
When selecting fresh strawberries, look for firm, brightly colored berries without bruises or soft spots.
When lightly squeezed, ripe strawberries will have a consistent, vibrant red color and a fragrant, juicy texture.
🍓 Are Strawberries Available Year Round?
Most types of strawberries are not available year-round; however, some varieties may be grown in greenhouses or imported from other countries during certain times of the year.
In the US, the best strawberry year-round is frozen strawberries available in stores throughout the winter, best picked and frozen in-season.
🍓 How Can You Tell If A Strawberry Is Sweet?
The best way to tell if a strawberry is sweet is by tasting the berry. Ripe and properly harvested strawberries should have a slightly tart but very sweet flavor when eaten raw.
Additionally, you can look for a deep red color that extends through each berry instead of just at the top.
🍓 What Month Is Best For Strawberry Picking?
In most parts of the US, you’re picking is best in May and June when peak strawberry picking season occurs.
Depending on where you live, this can vary slightly, so it’s important to check with farms for local strawberries before heading out.
🍓 Tips For Growing Strawberries
For optimal strawberry growth, providing each plant with ample space to expand is crucial. Strawberries grow in patches, and the best strawberry patches are set up and planted at least 12-18 inches apart in a sunny location with well-draining soil.
To conserve moisture and minimize weed growth, it's advisable to mulch the strawberry plants using straw or hay. Lastly, consistent watering throughout the growing strawberry season is essential for producing the best strawberries.
Here are some guidelines for storing strawberries:
- Do not wash before storing: Wait to wash strawberries until just before consumption, as excess moisture can cause them to spoil more quickly.
- Refrigerate: Keep strawberries in the refrigerator to slow the ripening process and preserve their freshness. Ideally, the temperature should be between 32°F (0°C) and 36°F (2°C).
- Proper container: Use a shallow container or tray lined with paper towels to store the strawberries in a single layer. The paper towels will help absorb any excess moisture, while the single layer prevents the berries from getting crushed or damaged.
- Ventilation: If you're using a container with a lid, ensure it has ventilation holes or leave it slightly open to allow air circulation, which helps to prevent mold growth.
- Sort before storing: Remove any damaged or overripe strawberries before storing, as they can release ethylene gas that will cause the other berries to ripen and spoil faster.
By following these storage guidelines, you can help prolong the freshness of your strawberries and enjoy them for a longer period.
What Is The Hardiness Zone Growing Calendar Timeline For Strawberries?
Generally, strawberries need between 80-110 frost-free days to produce fruit, and they should be planted as soon as the ground can be worked in early spring.
Can You Eat Unripe Strawberries?
If your berries are still green when you pick them, let them sit on the counter at room temperature until they turn red all the way through before eating them.
To speed up the ripening process, you can place your strawberries in a paper bag for one or two days.