When is strawberry season?

When is strawberry season?

The national strawberry season is said to run from January through November. You will find a winter strawberry season in Florida, where this fruit grows from November until April.  Texas joins for only three months, starting in February. In California it starts at the same time but lasts until November.

You can find when strawberries are in season in each American state in the following chart.

Strawberry season chart

StateStrawberries in season
Alabamamid-March till mid-July
AlaskaJuly till September
ArizonaFebruary till April
ArkansasMay till mid-June
CaliforniaFebruary till October
Coloradomid-June till mid-October
ConnecticutJune till mid-July
DelawareMay and June
FloridaJanuary till April, November and December
GeorgiaMarch till June
HawaiiJanuary till April and October till December
IdahoJuly and August
IllinoisMay and June
Indianamid-May till mid-July
KansasMay till mid-September
Kentuckymid-May till mid-June
LouisianaFebruary till May
Mainemid-June till mid-July
Marylandmid-May and June
MassachusettsJune and august till mid-October
Michiganmid-May till July
MinnesotaJune and July
Mississippimid-March and April
Missourimid-May till August
MontanaJune till mid-July
NebraskaJune and July
NevadaMay till October
New HampshireJune till September
New Jerseymid-May and June
New MexicoJune and July
New YorkJune and July
North Carolinamid-April till mid-June
North DakotaJune and July
OhioApril till June
OklahomaApril till June
OregonMay till August
Rhode IslandJune and July
South CarolinaMarch till June
South DakotaJune and July
TennesseeMay and June
TexasFebruary till April
UtahJune till mid-October
VirginiaApril till June
WashingtonJune till October
West VirginiaJune and September
Wisconsinmid-May till mid-June
WyomingJune and July

Strawberry season is influenced by a variety of factors, and that is why it evidently varies from one location to another. Some have lengthy seasons, while others are short. This is due to geographical differences, climatic conditions, and strawberry varieties. 

The fruit usually does well in climatic conditions and areas with warm days and cool nights; the main reason why strawberry farming does exceptionally well in California. California is the largest producer of strawberries, accounting for around 85% of all the produce, and has the most extended season. It is followed by Florida, which accounts for about 8% and has the second-longest season. In addition, new York, North Carolina, Oregon, and Washington are significant producers. 

With California being the largest producer by a considerable margin, it influences the strawberry season in the United States.

As the chart indicates, California’s season is almost year-long, running from February through October. As a result, it produces strawberries year-round, but the peak is usually from early spring until fall. This can be attributed to two main factors:

  • Most of California experiences a Mediterranean climate. It is characterized by hot, dry summers and winters that are mild and rainy. Strawberries do well with full sunshine because they flower in warm weather, and the sunny atmosphere enables them to develop strong roots and take up nutrients. Thus, the California season is elongated due to its long periods of sunny weather. 

Too much frost can also affect the growth and development of strawberries and as they do well in not-so-severe winters. 

The plant’s ideal temperatures are between 60 degrees and 80 degrees Fahrenheit but can thrive in as low as 22 degrees Fahrenheit if protected from frost.

  • Another reason is farmers in California have adopted higher-yielding strawberry varieties on decreased acreage. These varieties include Honeoye, Earliglow, Allstar, and Ozark Beauty. 

They also grow everbearing varieties that are more withstanding of harsh weather conditions and can continue being harvested until winter’s first frost. Good examples of the everbearing strawberry species are Fragaria X ananassa and Fragaria vesca. These hybrid varieties can withstand and perform in most weather conditions more than their counterparts. These varieties have been developed due to increased botanical engineering and agricultural research.

The two factors can be associated with Florida, a sub-tropical climate with hot sunny summers and mild winters. The summers are usually from June to winter. Its season runs from November through April.

Generally speaking, the cooler climates in the United States experience strawberry seasons for a shorter time, starting from June till the end of summer. And as the chart above shows, almost all the states’ peak seasons revolve around June, with most of them starting from mid-May and others going as early as mid-March. As a result, an increase in supplies can be witnessed during spring. Spring is an excellent season to pick strawberries, and as a result, the United States’ National Pick Strawberries Day is on May 20.

Strawberries stop ripening after they are picked and they are very fragile. Because of this, if they had to travel a long distance (and time) to your plate, they have been picked too early to prevent them from getting damaged along the way. Let’s get them locally. 🍓

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