LIMA – After two years of declining yields due to late spring frosts this season strawberry plants are blooming.

The strawberry picking season in 2021 lasted just three days at JK Orchard and Farm, which started its own strawberry picking business six years ago. Due to good weather the harvest season this year started two weeks earlier and co-owner Karen Vince expects it to last three weeks or more.

“We are very happy this year. The harvest looks great, the plants are loaded, and the berries we tried are very tasty, ”Vince said.

Strawberries bloom in three waves, Vince explained. The first wave yields larger strawberries that are “sporadic”. During the second flowering “the whole field just explodes overnight.” On the last wave of strawberries “pop up here and there” until the end of the season. This year received a wonderful harvest, all three flowers have survived.

At Suter’s Produce on Pandora, strawberries are “blooming nicely now and they are enjoying the warmth and sunny weather,” the website said. The farm expects the strawberry season to begin in early June, according to the farm’s website near Pandora.

Lincoln Ridge Farms, near Convoy, posted on his Facebook page: Sunday morning, when his strawberry strawberries began to appear small green strawberries, noting: “Everything is going well on the farm.”

Jutte’s Fruit Farm, located near Fort Recovery, reported on its Facebook page, it had many flowers and remained only a few weeks before the strawberry season. The farm has urged fans to take a look at its page for updates in the coming weeks.

JK Orchard & Farm’s family agri-tourism business is open to all ages. Based on crops in recent years with high yields, Wince expected more than 1,000 people to visit the farm, located at 1345 Lutz Road, Lima, during the strawberry harvest season. Open days and price list can be obtained by calling 419-604-4145 or on their website,

“Our mission is to create an atmosphere in which people can make unforgettable and meaningful experiences,” Vince said. “We want it to be a place where people can make memories with their loved ones by spending time together.”

While you can buy strawberries at the grocery store, it doesn’t create a family experience. Vince said the freshness and ripeness of the strawberries when harvested directly from the strawberry plant in the field is just amazing.

“Strawberries bought in the store are usually white in the center because they are not ripe, while fresh strawberries that you pick locally are red to the end,” she said. It changes the sweetness, texture and juiciness of strawberries. “When you bite one of our strawberries, the juice runs down your chin and fingers.”

JK Orchard and Farm uses organic farming techniques.

“We don’t use any fungicides or chemicals,” Vince said. After experimenting with many insect and weed control methods, she found that landscape fabric works best. It minimizes weeds and keeps the ground warmer, as well as blankets that protect against frost while protecting the roots from frost.

“It’s very time consuming,” Vince said.

This year, working alone, she and her husband Joe planted 5,000 strawberry plants on nearly two acres.

Joe Vince keeps ripe strawberries from the first flowering at JK Orchard and Farm. On Monday, the farm opens strawberry fields for the first time in two years. They will run from 9 a.m. to 11 a.m. Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays and from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturdays through June 13. Cancellation is possible due to weather or the presence of berries. To check business hours, call the farm at 419-604-4145.

JK Orchard and Farm will be open to collect their own until June 13th. Other farms in the area say their strawberry harvest is still weeks away, but they are expecting a good season after years of disappointing results.

The area expects a big harvest in 2022

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