New Hampshire strawberry fields are in full bloom
By DAN SEUFERT
Union Leader Correspondent | June 23. 2013 6:57PM
Bryson Eddy of Gilford and Gosia Bakowska of Poland, both employees of Beans and Greens in Gilford, show off some fresh-picked strawberries from the store's strawberry fields Wednesday morning. (DAN SEUFERT PHOTO)
But the recent sunny skies helped the crops recover, and it looks like a good strawberry season is upon us, farmers said. Most farms said they just started selling strawberries last week.
"But the berries are getting big with the sun, and it looks like we'll have a good crop. Not a great crop, but a good crop."
Farms across the state report a slow start to the season. Brookdale Farm in Hollis, among the southernmost strawberry farms in the state, has been selling strawberries since June 6, but just started its pick-your-own season last weekend because the plants have not been as strong as usual, according to Brookdale's Tyler Hardy.
"The fields don't look as healthy as they should, we don't have that much volume," Hardy said.
"Strawberries are a very delicate crop," he said. "It's hard to control compared to other crops. Strawberry plants are fragile, it's a challenge to grow them."
Farmers said the strawberries are now as large and flavorful as ever. And all said the berries are selling very quickly.
Strawberry farmers warned, though, of common misconceptions about strawberry season. People ask for strawberries at farms all summer long, and many farms sell strawberries before and after their own seasons that come from other places, and are not strictly "fresh."
"I can't tell you how many people come to the store in July and August asking for fresh strawberries, people don't understand that the season is brief, and they're upset when they realize they've missed it," Howe said.
"It might only last two weeks, some years that's all we get,"
Howe said. "If you like strawberries, now is the time to be Johnny-on-the-spot."