Welcome to the Strawberry Basket and the home of the Munsterteiger's. My name is Brad, my wife's name is Bess. We have 3 sons (Jonathan, Joseph and Jackson) and 1 daughter (Lillian).
I got my start, or should I say interest in berries, from my folks. My Father and Mother started raising strawberries back in 1983 in Freeport, MN. I have always enjoyed working and being around my folks, and with their operation there was never a lack of jobs that needed completing. In the late 90's, my father was at the point of transitioning his operation to whomever of us kids wanted to continue with it. With my family and I living and working in the Minneapolis metro area I realized that it would not be feasible for me to perform all the tasks that strawberries demand. I eventually purchased land in the Monticello area in the spring of 1998, while a younger brother "Dale" moved forward with purchasing my folks operation.
That first year, we (my father and I) cleared the land and worked the soil in preparation for planting the following spring. Come the spring of 1999, we (my father and I) along with my brother Dale planted 3 acres of strawberries. What made the operation work was the knowledge and experience that my father had acquired over the previous 20 years. Knowing what to do, and when to do it, was measurable in the success that was shown the next spring.
June of 2000 we realized our first picking season, and it was a huge success. But let it be known that success does not happen on it's own. As with most things in life, if you work hard at something you have a greater chance of succeeding. Our operation is family driven. Not only does my wife and I try to get our kids involved in helping out (that's if they're not at scout camp, soccer camp, basketball camp, hockey, school programs, etc, etc.), but we are also most fortunate to have our parent's involved. Currently, come picking season you'll usually find my father-in-law "Pete" running the check out stand. My father "Butch" likes to be in the field keeping order and making sure everyone is picking all the ripe berries, not just the big ones ( that's a real no no) and we'll tell you about it. And I'd be in the wrong not to mention our #1 hired hand (Julie), who has been with us for quite a few years now - let's just say she's invaluable to our operation.
This June will be our 12th year of operation in Monticello, and we are looking forward to our best year ever. Our fields are loaded with fruit and I personally guarantee that you and your family will not go away displeased. We have also recently expanded into Blueberries and Raspberries - which should also bear a bumper crop of fruit this year.
Best wishes, and we'll see you in the field soon.