When to Harvest Woodland Strawberry

The small berries can be easy to find. image by www.morguefile.com


Also known as the wild strawberry, and the wood strawberry, the woodland strawberry is found all over the United States and spreads north into Canada, as well as south into Mexico. While they are no competition for large, commercially grown strawberries from the grocery store, woodland strawberries carry an intensely sweeter taste than their larger cousins. The joy of harvesting woodland strawberries is as much for the flavor as it is for the fun and adventure of the experience.

Step 1

Wait until after the spring thaw for your area before you expect to see the plants begin to bloom. Typically the woodland strawberry will begin flowering in May, but can start sooner depending on your region---and all areas will see blooming continue into the summer.

Step 2

Take a walk through the area where you know the strawberries grow every year. You should notice a healthy supply of small white strawberry flowers as well as a few forming strawberries of a lime-green color.

Step 3

Continue daily or frequent walks through the area and watch for the green berries to begin to turn white. The turning white of the berries is your signal to keep a close eye on the patch.

Step 4

Pick the berries once they have turned fully red and the fruits are ½ to ¾ of an inch wide. Gather several for cooking or eat them immediately, but be aware, regardless, that they don't last long in refrigeration and should not be frozen.

Tips and Warnings

  • Keep in mind that any time you harvest from wild locations, you are in competition with the animals---which may or may not depend on the berries. While it can be a challenge to get to the ripe berries before the animals do, don't forget to leave some berries behind.


  • Growing Fruit and Vegetables; Richard Bird; 2003
  • Encyclopedia of Northwest Native Plants for Gardens and Landscapes; Kathleen Robson, Alice Richter, and Marianne Filbert; 2008
Keywords: woodland strawberry, wild strawberry, harvesting woodland strawberry

About this Author

Writing from Virginia, Margaret Telsch-Williams specializes in personal finance, money management, gardening, crafts and sewing, cooking, DIY projects and travel. When not writing instructional articles online, she works for the website Widescreen Warrior as a contributor and podcast co-host discussing all things film and entertainment. She holds a Bachelor of Science in biology and a master's degree in writing.

Photo by: www.morguefile.com