They are hitting the market much later than last year, but Whatcom County strawberries are finally starting to arrive.
Barbie’s plans to get its strawberries into local grocery stores in the coming days, including Haggen, Safeway, the Food Pavilion and The Market at Birch Bay.
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The strawberry harvest and the u-picking on other farms is expected to be in full force starting next week, with much of the harvest completed around early July, said Barb Kraght, owner at Barbie’s Berries.
Last year the strawberry harvest began in mid-May, but that was an unusually early year. With a much colder winter, this year’s harvest is more in line with the traditional start time.
Kraght said she’s glad to get he harvest going before Father’s Day weekend, which is typically the biggest period for strawberry sales. While rain is expected to arrive Thursday, the local strawberry farmers are hoping for sunny weather in the coming weeks to complete the ripening process.
Sam Grubbs of Bellingham Country Gardens said his field fared well through the cold, wet winter and didn’t suffer much damage. No herbicides or pesticides are sprayed at Bellingham Country Gardens, which will be open for u-picking 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. each Wednesday and Saturday during the summer. Grubbs expects to have strawberries available throughout the summer.