Wisconsin Potato and Vegetable Growers Association

Meet Kathy Jo Knutson

Irrigation sales and farming have been in the Knutson blood for years. Ralph Knutson, father of Jerry Knutson, who sadly passed away in a snowmobile accident, December 2019, sold water reels and parts for years, all while he expanded the family farm.

“Jerry always held his father’s legacy close and wanted to follow in his practices,” says Kathy Jo Knutson, owner and president of Oasis Irrigation and Jerry’s widow.

Jerry’s brother sold irrigation in the South and was a guide in opening and running the irrigation business.

“Jerry shared his passion for quality products and helping farmers farm for the future with many people, including the kids,” Kathy Jo says. “The boys worked with Jerry on the farm, so when new products became available, they were one of the first to use them.”

Oasis Irrigation started out, in 2000, with Jerry and four employees. They were located at the farm office, which proved to be a great opportunity and location to start the business.

Jerry put an addition on the shop and started an inventory shed.

“This worked out well for years,” Kathy Jo remarks. “In 2012, Jerry purchased the current location on 5th Avenue, in Plainfield, and moved from the small office to a large showroom with a more convenient location.”

“He was proud of his business and employees and what he had grown,” Kathy Jo says.

The new location brought better visibility and increased sales, as well as the opportunity to have a showroom and display some of the new products.

“I take great pride in a multi-generational business,” Kathy Jo says. “It warms my heart to know that my boys are tilling the same soil that their grandfather did. The farm and irrigation business have always been a priority in our lives.”

The Knutson kids have worked on the farm since they could reach the pedals, sometimes younger and with more ease than Kathy Jo says she was comfortable with.

“Not too many people get the opportunity to work alongside a family member such as a dad or grandfather, and I know that it means the world to my kids,” she states.

“I have been so blessed with outstanding employees,” Knutson continues. “Jerry had a well-oiled machine, and the transition has had its ups and downs, but the employees have been a great support and resource.”

Knutson says the business is running strong due to a great team and support from our customers and is not going anywhere. She says that while the team lost its leader, we still have so much to build from: a quality product with eminent service.