Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Strawberries in September

I love strawberries and this is a certainly new farm experience, getting fresh local strawberries in the Fall. I did a trial planting of the new strawberry variety, Seascape, which is one of the new "daylight neutral" varieties. And they worked well. Out of the 100 foot trial row, we picked several quarts of berries yesterday. Quite a real treat to have strawberries in September. The birds love them too however, the berry on the right was clearly enjoyed by a bird. These plants do not seem to put out runners like other strawberry plants. They seem to stay put, and save their energy for the second crop of the year. Shorter daylight hours tell them to put out more berries instead of runnering. Berry size is smaller than the spring crop, likely because there is little moisture in August except for a passing thunderstorm. Flavor was very good and they were very sweet. So this is a successful trial. We'll plant more and also when we get our high tunnel greenhouse built we'll have to plant some in there. In the green house we can begin to water them perhaps in mid August and get a larger berry size. It will be quite a novelty to have some to sell at September farmers markets, perhaps next year.

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