Summers in the Northland are undeniably short. Minnesotans and Wisconsinites alike try to cram all we can into those short but oh, so sweet months.

One of summer's "must-dos" that should be added to everyone's list is berry picking at Spectrum Farm Strawberries, located at 2332 County Road 4 in Carlton, Minnesota which is a quick 20-minute drive from Duluth.

What is Spectrum Farm Strawberries?

Spectrum Farm Strawberries is a 40-acre strawberry farm where customers pick their own fresh strawberries. In 2017, the farm was purchased from the Finke family of Carlton. The Finkes are well-known for 30+ years of owning and operating Finke's Berry Farm.

After the shift of ownership, Spectrum Farm Strawberries relied heavily on the Finkes to make sure that the berry-picking tradition carries on and that customers have the same wonderful experience that the Finkes offered to its loyal customers for over 30 years.

Are the berries organic?

Spectrum Farm Strawberries does not use insecticides, fungicides, or conventional fertilizers.  They use a small flock of geese who eat the grasses surrounding the berries in order to keep the weeds at bay. There is also a dedicated team of staff members who weed the garden. 

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What do I need to know?

The fresh-picked berries are $4.00 per pound. Feel free to bring your own pail for picking, otherwise, you may purchase a flat to carry them home at the cost of $1.00 per flat. There are no prepicked berries for sale; you must pick your own.

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Reservations are not accepted. If you arrive and the berries are all picked, you'll need to come back after the next batch ripens, which is usually only a day or two. Cash and checks are the only accepted methods of payment. No credit cards are accepted!

How will I know when to pick?

This season has been dry. Will that affect the crop? Harvesting dates vary by season. It's looking like the first part of July will be go-time this year. Call their berry hotline anytime for field and picking updates at 218-389-6265. Another way to stay updated is to check their Facebook page. There, you'll also find tips and tricks on berry picking from Strawberry Steve. His first piece of "berry good" advice: "Only pick the red ones!"

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