More About Strawberries

 

Our strawberries have been growing at the Cannon Road location in Carlsbad for over 50 years.  The field is approximately 30 acres in size and borders the Batiquitos Lagoon to the east and Interstate 5 to the west.  Our temperate climate in Carlsbad and the proximity to the Pacific Ocean makes for ideal strawberry growing conditions.  The cool marine layer allows us to harvest our berries into the summer, sometimes until the end of August. 

Although strawberries are usually considered seasonal, it is a year-round business for Carlsbad Strawberry Company, employing at least 20 people.  

The harvest usually takes place between January and July. The strawberry plants we grow usually slow the flowering when the nights are less that 10 hours long, so we begin trimming/pruning the plants in July.  If successful, and we have our mild weather, we can coax the fields to produce through the next few months . 

In August, we may treat the soil for diseases.  This is done to prevent the spread of pests and weeds.   

In September we make the rows and furrows, apply the fertilizer and drip (irrigation) tape .  Depending on the weather at the nursery, possibly 5 to 10 acres may be planted by the end of September. 

In October we complete the planting of the fields, watering on a regular basis with sprinklers. 

Plastic bed covers go in late October.  By then, the first flowers will start to appear.

If the weather permits, we will usually see our first strawberries by Christmas.   

In January, we usually begin our commercial picking season.  Production varies due to cold weather and rain.  We usually sell most of our strawberries commercially and at our strawberry stands.  Normally we open our U-Pick sometime in spring…be sure to watch our website for announcements.   

Through July, you will find the fields full of berries.  The strawberries start to get smaller at this time of year, but the long days and large amounts of sunshine make them super sweet.  

Rain affects strawberry production, as does wind, freeze and hail.  All of these elements also affect the picking conditions.  There are many different aspects to growing a successful crop, and weather is just one of them.  We use a minimal amount of pesticide- usually a mild fungicide after times of rain to prevent problems with moisture. 

We also use an Integrated Pest Management system to reduce the use of chemicals.  We monitor every aspect of the farm very carefully, and spray only when absolutely necessary.  You may see the man that walks the farm and cracks the bullwhip!  This is to keep away the birds that like to pick the seeds off of the strawberries if he’s not around.   

We always recommend washing the strawberries before eating them. 

If you have any other questions about strawberries, you will find the California Strawberry Commission web site full of more information than you ever thought possible on strawberries. 

Thank you for visiting our web site, and Carlsbad Strawberry Company in Carlsbad.  We hope you’ll make our strawberries part of your table for many years to come!