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When available to pick: June – September (main crop June)
Strawberries really are the quintessential summer fruit. Historically strawberries were unavailable after the main crop finished towards the end of June. Luckily over the last few decades, advances in plant breeding and selection mean we can now grown strawberries well into autumn.
There really isn't anything like a ripe, outdoor grown strawberry, you can taste the sunshine!
Generally speaking, commercial growers supplying supermarkets are more focused on fruit size (larger berries command a higher price), firmness (for better shipping and shelf life) and disease/pest resistance than they are with flavour.
When you buy directly from a Pick Your Own farm you really are enjoying perfectly ripe fruit in the very best condition. Fruit supplied to supermarkets can be picked days before it is fully ripe to allow for transportation time and a longer shelf life.
Our main crop of Strawberries is available to pick around the start of June and this is when our most abundant crop is available (the exact date varies from year to year depending on weather)
In order to ensure a continuous supply of strawberries over the summer months we grow a number of different varieties of strawberries in different fields across the farm. On arrival, please check with our staff which field to pick from as this is likely to have changed since your last visit. Patches ready to pick are marked with a strawberry sign!
Our late variety ‘everbearers’ continue to produce fruit until the first frosts of autumn but this is a slower fruiting variety. It is always worth calling ahead to check availability in late summer particularly after extreme weather.
All of our strawberries are outdoor grown ground level plants. We do not use polytunnels or grow tabletop strawberries. We believe this does not produce fruit of the same quality as traditional fruit grown outdoors in the summer sun.
There are species of strawberry native to temperate climates all over the world. However the strawberries we know today have their roots in 18th century France.
In the 1750s the modern garden strawberry was cultivated from a crossing of wild strawberry varieties in Brittany.
Strawberries are the only fruit with seeds on the outside. On average, a strawberry has over 200 seeds on its external membrane.
You may think the strawberries derive their name from our modern practice of laying straw in the fields but this is not the case! The world strawberry derives from old English word Steowberie which was certainly in use centuries before the practice of straw laying became common. The most popular explanation being that, left unchecked, the runners of the strawberry plant will 'stray' or 'strew' all over a field.
Strawberry jam is slightly trickier to prepare than raspberry jam as strawberries are lower in pectin (particularly if they are very ripe). However it is worth persevering, a little practice makes perfect and there is no substitute for home made strawberry jam, even the very best commercially produced jams are unlikely to contain as much fruit as the jam you can make for yourself.
This recipe for strawberry jam is slightly trickier to prepare than raspberry jam as strawberries are lower in pectin (particularly if they are very ripe. However it is worth persevering. There is no substitute for home made strawberry jam, even the very best commercially produced jams are unlikely to contain as much fruit as the jam you can make for yourself.