Grow Strawberries in Wisconsin: Your Ultimate Guide

Welcome to our ultimate guide on how to grow strawberries in Wisconsin! Growing strawberries can be a rewarding and delicious experience, but it requires specific knowledge and techniques to succeed. In this comprehensive guide, we will cover everything you need to know about strawberry farming in Wisconsin. From the best varieties for Wisconsin’s climate to expert cultivation tips, we’ve got you covered. So whether you are a seasoned gardener or a beginner, read on to learn how to grow juicy and sweet strawberries in your Wisconsin backyard.

Best Strawberry Varieties for Wisconsin

Choosing the right strawberry variety is crucial to a successful harvest in Wisconsin. Here are some of the best varieties that thrive in the climate and soil conditions of the state:

Variety Flavor Yield Harvest Time
Earliglow Sweet and juicy Good Early June
Jewel Firm and slightly tart Very good Mid-June
Allstar Sweet and juicy Excellent Late June to early July

Earliglow is a popular choice for its early harvest and sweet flavor. It is also disease-resistant, making it a reliable option for growers. Jewel, on the other hand, produces larger fruit and has a longer harvest season. Allstar is known for its exceptional yield and consistent fruit size.

Other recommended varieties for Wisconsin include Honeoye, Seascape, and Ozark Beauty. Consider factors such as your growing zone, soil type, and desired harvest time when choosing the best variety for your garden.

Wisconsin Strawberry Growing Conditions

Growing strawberries in Wisconsin requires specific conditions to ensure a healthy and bountiful crop. Here are some factors to consider:

Factor Requirement
Temperature Strawberries thrive in a cool climate, ideally between 60-80°F during the day and 40-60°F at night. Temperatures above 85°F can cause stress and reduce fruit production.
Sunlight Strawberry plants require at least 6-8 hours of direct sunlight per day to produce ample fruit.
Soil pH Strawberries prefer a slightly acidic soil pH of 5.5-6.5. A pH outside of this range can affect nutrient uptake and plant growth.
Drainage Good drainage is crucial for strawberry plants. Poorly drained soil can lead to root rot and other diseases.

By ensuring these conditions are met, you can create an optimal growing environment for your strawberries in Wisconsin.

Strawberry Plant Care in Wisconsin

Strawberry plants require proper care and attention to thrive in Wisconsin’s climate. Here are some essential tips to keep your strawberry plants healthy:

Aspect Plant Care
Watering Strawberry plants need consistent moisture, especially during fruiting season. Water deeply once a week, or more frequently in hot weather.
Fertilizing Apply a balanced fertilizer that is high in phosphorus in early spring when the plants are actively growing. Repeat the application every 4-6 weeks throughout the growing season.
Mulching Use organic mulch like straw or wood chips to keep the soil moist, suppress weeds, and regulate soil temperature.
Pest Control Inspect your plants regularly for pests like aphids, spider mites, and slugs. Use natural remedies like insecticidal soap or neem oil to control infestations.
Disease Prevention Practice good hygiene by removing dead leaves and debris from around the plants regularly. Apply fungicides preventatively to protect against common diseases like powdery mildew and verticillium wilt.

Remember to prune your strawberry plants after they have fruited and maintain a weed-free growing area to avoid competition for nutrients. With the right care, your strawberry plants will yield a bountiful harvest that will make your taste buds dance with delight!

How to Grow Strawberries in Wisconsin

Growing strawberries in Wisconsin can be a rewarding and enjoyable experience, as long as you provide the right conditions for the plants to thrive. Here is a step-by-step guide on how to grow strawberries in Wisconsin:

  1. Prepare the soil: Choose a location with well-draining soil that receives plenty of sunlight. Mix in compost or aged manure to improve the soil’s fertility and drainage.
  2. Plant the strawberries: Plant strawberry plants in early spring, after the ground has thawed. Space the plants about 12-18 inches apart in rows that are 2-3 feet apart. Dig a hole deep enough to accommodate the roots and set the plant in the hole, making sure that the crown is level with the soil surface.
  3. Water the plants: Water the strawberry plants well after planting and keep the soil consistently moist throughout the growing season. Avoid overwatering, as this can lead to root rot.
  4. Fertilize the plants: Apply a balanced fertilizer like a 10-10-10 blend once a month during the growing season. Be careful not to over-fertilize, as this can harm the plants.
  5. Mulch the plants: Apply a layer of mulch around the plants to help conserve moisture and control weeds. Straw, pine needles, or shredded leaves are good choices for mulch.
  6. Prune the plants: After the growing season, remove any dead leaves and runners to promote healthy growth and fruit production.
  7. Protect the plants: Cover the plants with netting or row covers to protect them from birds and other animals that may eat the fruit.

By following these tips, you can successfully grow delicious and healthy strawberries in your Wisconsin garden.

Strawberry Farming Techniques in Wisconsin

Wisconsin’s unique climate and soil conditions require advanced farming techniques to maximize strawberry production. Here are some methods that have proven successful:

Raised Beds

Raised beds are an excellent option for Wisconsin growers, as they improve drainage and soil structure. They also help to regulate soil temperature, allowing strawberries to thrive in colder climates. When building raised beds, ensure they are at least 6 inches high and 18 inches wide to accommodate strawberry plants’ root systems.


Plasticulture involves covering the soil with plastic sheeting to create raised planting beds and reduce weed growth. This technique is particularly useful for Wisconsin growers, as it limits soil erosion and conserves moisture in dry conditions. Additionally, plasticulture increases soil temperatures, promoting earlier harvests and higher yields.

Irrigation Systems

Irrigation is crucial for strawberry production in Wisconsin, where drought and heat stress can negatively impact plant growth. There are several irrigation systems that growers can use, including drip irrigation, overhead sprinklers, and furrow irrigation. Drip irrigation is the most efficient method and can conserve up to 50% of water compared to other systems.

By implementing these methods, Wisconsin growers can produce healthy and abundant strawberry crops that meet the state’s growing demand.

Wisconsin Strawberry Planting Guide

If you’re planning to grow strawberries in Wisconsin, it’s essential to follow a planting guide tailored to the state’s climate and soil conditions. Here are some key considerations to keep in mind:

Planting Time Mid to late April, or as soon as the soil is workable
Soil Type Well-drained, sandy loam with a pH of 6.0-6.5
Spacing 12-18 inches apart in rows that are 2-3 feet apart
Depth Plant crown at soil level, with roots spread out and covered with soil
Mulching Apply 1-2 inches of clean straw or pine needles around plants to conserve moisture and suppress weeds
Fertilizing Apply a balanced fertilizer at planting time, then again after the first harvest
Watering Water deeply once a week, or more often during dry spells

By following these guidelines, you’ll be on your way to growing delicious and bountiful strawberries in Wisconsin!

Strawberry Production in Wisconsin

Wisconsin is a major producer of strawberries, with over 70% of the state’s crop sold directly to consumers. The industry supports local farmers and contributes to the state’s economy while providing fresh and delicious berries to the market.

However, strawberry farming in Wisconsin can be challenging. The weather can be unpredictable, and pests and diseases can affect the crop if their management is not properly maintained.

Despite the challenges, the strawberry industry in Wisconsin is thriving. The state has more than 300 strawberry farms, which collectively produce over 3 million pounds of strawberries annually.

Year Production (in pounds)
2018 3.4 million
2019 3.1 million
2020 2.9 million

These numbers indicate that although production has slightly decreased, it is still a significant industry.

Additionally, Wisconsin’s strawberry season runs from June to August, which allows growers to take advantage of the demand for fresh strawberries during the summer months. Many also offer u-pick opportunities, which attract visitors to their farms.

Overall, strawberry production in Wisconsin provides ample opportunities for growers, consumers, and the state’s economy. With the right knowledge and techniques, farmers can continue to thrive in the industry and provide the public with delicious, locally grown strawberries.

Expert Tips and Tricks for Strawberry Cultivation in Wisconsin

Strawberry cultivation requires careful planning and attention to detail to ensure a successful harvest. Here are some expert tips and tricks to help you optimize your strawberry cultivation in Wisconsin:

1. Crop Rotation

It’s important to rotate your strawberry crops every 2-3 years to prevent soil-borne diseases and pests. Consider planting cover crops like clover or rye during the off-season to improve soil health and fertility.

2. Companion Planting

Planting beneficial companion plants like marigolds, chives, or borage can help repel pests and attract pollinators to your strawberry beds. Be sure to avoid planting strawberries near crops like tomatoes, peppers, or eggplants, which can attract the same pests and diseases.

3. Pruning Techniques

Regular pruning of your strawberry plants can improve fruit quality and yields. Remove any dead or diseased leaves, as well as runners that can divert energy away from fruit production. Consider using the “matted-row” or “hill” system for best results.

4. Soil Testing

Regular soil testing can help you adjust pH levels and nutrient deficiencies in your strawberry beds. Aim for a soil pH between 6.0 and 6.5, and supplement with fertilizers and compost as needed.

5. Pest Control

Prevention is key when it comes to pest control in strawberry cultivation. Keep your beds clean and well-maintained, and consider using natural predator insects like ladybugs or lacewings to keep pests at bay. If necessary, use organic insecticides or fungicides as a last resort.

6. Harvesting Techniques

Harvest your strawberries at peak ripeness for the best flavor and texture. Be gentle when picking to avoid damaging the fruit, and refrigerate promptly to prevent spoilage. Consider using a “pick-your-own” system for a fun and profitable strawberry farming experience.


Congratulations, you are now equipped with the knowledge and tools to grow delicious strawberries in Wisconsin! By following the advice provided in this guide, you can confidently select the best strawberry varieties for Wisconsin’s climate and soil conditions, create optimal growing conditions, care for your strawberry plants, and implement advanced farming techniques.

Remember to refer back to this guide throughout the growing season to ensure you are properly maintaining your strawberry plants. Don’t forget to apply the expert tips and tricks to further enhance your harvest!

Whether you are growing strawberries for personal consumption or as a commercial venture, Wisconsin offers a promising market for this juicy fruit. With dedication and hard work, you can produce a bountiful strawberry crop and enjoy the fruits of your labor.


Q: What are the best strawberry varieties for Wisconsin?

A: The best strawberry varieties for Wisconsin include Jewel, Earliglow, and AC Wendy. These varieties are well-adapted to Wisconsin’s climate and soil conditions.

Q: What are the specific growing conditions required for strawberries in Wisconsin?

A: Strawberries in Wisconsin thrive in temperatures between 60°F and 80°F, require full sunlight, prefer slightly acidic soil with a pH of 6.0-6.5, and need well-drained soil.

Q: How do I care for strawberry plants in Wisconsin?

A: To care for strawberry plants in Wisconsin, ensure they receive adequate water, fertilize them regularly, apply mulch to control weeds and retain moisture, monitor for pests and diseases, and take appropriate measures for prevention and control.

Q: How do I grow strawberries in Wisconsin?

A: To grow strawberries in Wisconsin, prepare the soil by removing the weeds and adding organic matter, plant the strawberry plants in rows or raised beds, and provide proper maintenance such as watering, fertilizing, and protecting from pests and diseases.

Q: What farming techniques are recommended for strawberry cultivation in Wisconsin?

A: Recommended farming techniques for strawberry cultivation in Wisconsin include using raised beds to improve drainage, employing plasticulture to control weeds and conserve moisture, and installing irrigation systems for efficient watering.

Q: Is there a planting guide for strawberries in Wisconsin?

A: Yes, we have a comprehensive planting guide tailored for Wisconsin gardeners. It provides information on ideal planting dates, spacing recommendations, and other essential considerations for successful strawberry planting.

Q: What should I know about strawberry production in Wisconsin?

A: Strawberry production in Wisconsin offers economic opportunities, but farmers may face challenges such as market demand fluctuations and potential pest and disease issues. It is crucial to consider these factors when planning for commercial strawberry farming.

Q: What are some expert tips and tricks for strawberry cultivation in Wisconsin?

A: Expert tips and tricks for strawberry cultivation in Wisconsin include practicing crop rotation to maintain soil health, companion planting to deter pests, and employing proper pruning techniques for long-term plant vigor.