Farming on the 5’s – The California Edition

Today we’re privileged to learn about some farming happening in California thanks to another great post from my sister-in-law! 

So back to farming in California…..

It’s time to start planting the next years strawberry crop! Remember the post in October with the Puncher? The Puncher, so cleverly named, was used to punch holes in the plastic to prepare the beds for planting. But prior to planting we have to get our strawberry transplants. All the acres for commercial strawberry production are planted with transplants.

Where do the transplants come from? Strawberry plants have two methods of reproducing 1) make a strawberry with seeds or 2) make stolons which result in new little plants identical to the original plant. (stolons are a modified shoots that run horizontal to the ground….if you grow strawberries in your garden I’m sure you see them all the time)

Strawberry stolons

Acres of strawberries are planted in nurseries in Northern California solely to produce plants with stolons like the picture above. The stolons are harvested with a machine similar to a potato digger.

Strawberry digging

The machine digs into the top 6 inches of soil. The soil is separated off by sieves. And the stolons are transferred to the white bin on the back of the machine. These plants can now be planted in the commercial production fields.

Strawberry stolons after digging

The stolons are then transplanted to the commercial production fields

Aerial picture of new strawberry fields ready for planting

Strawberry plants about 2 weeks after planting.

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5 thoughts on “Farming on the 5’s – The California Edition

  1. I like that aerial photo. You actually have main highways between fields out there? Are the stolons transplanted by hand and just pushed into the holes that the puncher made?

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  2. Haha yeah the aerial photo is from the Oxnard area so there’s a lot more urbanization than the central coast. The stolons are transplanted by hand and just pushed into the holes. It’s a backache let me tell you!…and a good ab workout in some weird way.

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  3. Pingback: Farming on the 5′s – The California Edition | Small Town Nebraska

  4. I love this post. I live in CA and farm on a very small scale just to feed my family in my own back yard. I love to go out my back door and pick berries, veggies and fruits. Nothing like having a store in your own back yard. Your blogs are very fun and I enjoy seeing your posts! Keep u the great work!

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