Strawberry gardening is fun and rewarding and a tasty crop to grow with children. There are many strawberry varieties to choose from and they’ll grow well in pots, window boxes, growing bags or planters.
When planting, strawberries like to spread out so plan on about 18 inches between each plant. They also produce runners so snip them off throughout the season.
If you’re planning to grow strawberries in your garden this year, there are a few tips and tricks you need to know. These include avoiding weeds, choosing the right planting location and maintaining a healthy plant through crop rotation.
Strawberries can be grown as perennials, which means that they continue to grow and produce fruit for many years after the initial planting. This is why they’re so popular for use in landscaping and vegetable gardens.
To plant strawberries, choose a site that is well-drained and has good air circulation. This will reduce diseases such as leaf spot, blight, verticillium wilt and powdery mildew.
You’ll also need to prepare your strawberry bed before you plant. The soil needs to be rich and free of weeds. The best way to do this is to work in aged manure or compost a couple months before you plant.
Strawberries are one of the easiest foods to grow in your garden and the rewards can be great. However, strawberries require fertilizing on a regular basis for successful planting, growing, and harvesting.
The key is to read the signals your strawberry plants give you so that you can determine when they need nutrients and how much to apply.
If your strawberry plants display signs such as pale leaves or no berries, you may need to fertilize them.
Nitrogen is the main nutrient for strawberry plant growth and development. It promotes leaf growth and also encourages fruit development.
As the weather warms, strawberries are an ideal food crop to grow in your garden. Homegrown berries are sweeter and cheaper than store-bought varieties.
Watering is essential for the successful growth and harvest of strawberries. It’s important to keep the soil well-watered but not soggy or the shallow roots will rot.
Strawberries like rich, well-draining soil with a pH of 5.5 – 6.8. They also require full sun.
Plant strawberry crowns 18 inches apart and set them so that the central growing bud (crown) is exposed to air and light, not buried beneath soil.
Use a mulch – pine straw, shredded leaves or black plastic – to keep the soil moist and clean. Mulch also helps to prevent weeds from thriving. In addition, it keeps fruit up off the ground and reduces the spread of disease spores in splashing rain or irrigation.
Strawberry pruning can happen at any time during the growing season, although it’s best to do light pruning in early spring. This will keep plants healthy, encourage fruit production and minimize the risk of pests and diseases.
Pruning can be a messy job, so make sure you’re wearing gloves and wearing protective gear. Also, prune strawberries when the weather is dry, because wet weather can spread diseases into your garden.
When pruning, start by shearing off any unwanted runners – these look like long stems from the center of the plant that produce a new plant at the end.
Strawberries are ground-hugging perennials and they will propagate themselves through runners in both spring and fall. However, letting the runners grow takes energy and nitrogen away from the mother plant, which is necessary for producing berries.
Strawberries are sweet, juicy fruits that grow well in containers and beds. They’re also great for overwintering as perennials.
Strawberries love a consistently moist environment, so be sure to water regularly during dry periods and check the soil for signs of waterlogging. You can plant your strawberries in mounds or mulched beds to help prevent soil rot, and you can also use drip irrigation.
The best place for strawberries to be planted is in a weed-free spot with rich soil that’s well-aerated and fertile. Choose a site that’s free of nematodes and soilborne diseases, and avoid planting them where tomatoes or eggplants have been grown.
In addition, be sure to renovate your strawberry bed right after harvest. This will help the plants rejuvenate for a healthy and bountiful crop the next year.