Nelson's Berry Farm
c/o Ryan, John, or Judy Nelson
W4929 Gunnar Rd.
Westboro, WI 54490
Contact us at: (715) 427-3440
The first strawberries were planted on our farm in 1995. The first planting was a small strawberry plot and after some dedicated research, we decided we could be successful at producing and marketing fruits and vegetables.
Our season begins in March with the tapping of sugar maple trees and cooking and marketing maple syrup. We are licensed to sell our High Stump Sugar Bush syrup anywhere and our syrup is superior to any you may have tasted.
With the winding down of syrup production, we move into inoculating our shiitake mushroom logs. We cut fresh four foot long oak or iron wood logs, drill many holes in them, and inoculate them with a variety of different types of shiitake mushrooms. It takes about a year and a half before the logs produce mushrooms, so it takes a lot of patience before we can harvest a crop. We've been at this for about eight years and we do between seventy-five and one hundred logs each spring. In this way, we almost always have mushrooms available during our marketing season. This type of mushroom tastes really good and is a very healthy food.
We barely get done with the mushrooms, and we are planting strawberry plants. We plant one row at a time with an old tobacco planter. We usually plant about twelve thousand new plants each year. These will not be harvested until a year from planting.
The asparagus crop is harvested in May and June. We have one acre that is picked every day with a harvest that varies from thirty to sixty pounds depending on the weather. The warmer the weather, the bigger the harvest will be. About 80% of the crop is marketed out of our farm, with the remainder going to the Medford Farmer's Market.
John and Judy selling vegetables and maple syrup at a local farmer's market.
Strawberries are picked from about the middle of June to the middle of July. We hire six local high school and college students to help with the pre-picked berries. We offer pick-your-own at a cheaper price and it is popular in our area because many people are into freezing and making home preservatives. The five acres of strawberries have three varieties that have proven to bare well at our farm.
The two acres of blueberries are picked in July. What a treat! These berries are picked off the bushes.
The three acres of raspberries are summer and fall bearing. The summer berries are picked in July. The fall type is harvested in August and September. We offer both pick-your-own and pre-picked raspberries. This is the longest fruit crop because we have overhead irrigation which makes it possible to extend the raspberry season.
We have three irrigation ponds which serve two purposes. One is to irrigate during dry weather and the second is to frost protect during cold weather. During a frosty spell, water is applied with sprinklers. Ice forms on the blossoms or fruit and this keeps them from freezing.
Sprinklers are protecting the blueberry blossoms from frost in early spring.
Summer garden crops raised and sold on our farm include lettuce, spinach, cabbage, peas, green and yellow beans, beets, carrots, cucumbers, sweet onions, zucchini, peppers, tomatoes, kohlrabi, red and white potatoes, and sweet corn.
In September and October, we harvest and sell many varieties of winter squash and pumpkins. After the first hard frost, our growing season is over.
We invite you to visit our farm and taste some of the fruits of our harvest.
We are members of the Wisconsin Berry Growers Association