Local Food Stores Feature: BC Grown Summer Strawberries

After a cold and wet spring, local strawberries are finally showing up in food stores around the Okanagan. 

After a cold and wet spring, local strawberries are finally showing up in food stores around the Okanagan. 

This year’s strawberry-picking season has started a little later than the last year or two. That’s mostly due to the fact that a cooler and wetter winter and spring pushed the season back a few weeks. This left shelves reserved for BC grown strawberries in local food stores empty – until now. It’s finally strawberry season in the Okanagan! To celebrate, we’ve compiled some fun strawberry facts and tips to entertain your friends with during your next strawberry feast.

1. Strawberries are among the first fruit to ripen in the spring.

Even though the strawberry season came a little later than we’re used to, they’re still among the first fruit ready to be picked once the snow melts.

2. Each strawberry holds up to 200 seeds.

Yes, you read that right. Strawberries can contain up to 200 seeds on the outside surface. And, in case you didn’t know, strawberries are the only fruit to showcase their seeds on the outside.

3. When looking for strawberries, pick ones that have green or yellow seeds.

Black, brown, or no seeds mean the strawberry has seen better days and might be ready for the compost pile.

4. Strawberries aren’t technically part of the berry family.

They’re pretty much in a class of their own; however, their buds most closely resemble roses and give off a wonderful scent as they grow.

5. Strawberry plants are recognized as a perennial.

They grow back every year. They truly are the gift that keeps on giving. Think about that the next time you’re looking to give someone a plant or flowers as a gift.

6. In Ancient Roman times, it was believed that strawberries contained medicinal powers.

They were harvested and used to treat everything from a sore throat to a severe bout of depression.

7. There are three different types of strawberries:

June-bearing, everbearing, and day neutral.

  • June-bearing – These strawberries produce one large crop each season, typically in June.
  • Everbearing – These strawberries produce two to three rounds of crops, but typically come in smaller bundles.
  • Day Neutral – These strawberries will produce fruit continuously throughout the growing season, typically in smaller quantities than its counterparts.

8. Rinsing strawberries in advance can speed up spoiling.

If you’ve just purchased a basket or two of strawberries from local food stores or the market, don’t rinse them until you’re ready to eat them. This will keep them fresher longer.

9. Strawberries are grown in every province.

Although you may think that the Okanagan is synonymous with the best fruits and vegetables, each province puts out strawberries every growing season. We still believe ours taste the best though.

10. In France, strawberries are considered an aphrodisiac.

This is why chocolate covered strawberries are really popular during romantic events like Valentine’s Day. We’ve even seen them prominently displayed in Honeymoon suites too.

Are you curious about which fruit is next to be in season and displayed on the shelves of your favourite food stores? Take a look at our previous post for the answers: Discover Healthy Eating: Get to Know Local Produce.

If you’re looking for the closest grocery store to you that features the freshest, in-season produce in the Okanagan, come and visit Mike’s Produce. We’re located in the heart of Kelowna and have been proudly serving Kelowna residents for 25 years.