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Growing Strawberries

February 9, 2012 - GrowOrganic
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Once you have a strawberry bed going, you need to renovate and renew it every year, to maintain healthy yields. June-bearer and Everbearer beds should be renewed. Day Neutral strawberries should simply be replaced after three years. STRAWBERRIES ARE VIGOROUS PLANTS As the strawberries increase you want to keep the beds from becoming overcrowded (which would reduce yield and could encourage diseases). It sounds rather sedate when you read that “strawberry plants spread by sending out runners”.…
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Growing Guide
Strawberry Planting & Growing Guide (pdf)
Video Transcript
Hi I'm Tricia an organic gardener. Strawberries are a wonderful summer treat especially if they're picked right out of the garden. These plants are widely adapted and they can even be grown as far north as Fairbanks Alaska.

There are three types of strawberries that are planted today: June bearing which give you the largest crop and they give it early in the summer all at once and then there are the ever bearers and the day neutral cultivars which willgive you multiple smaller crops. If you want all your strawberries to ripen at once for preserving plant the June bearers. If you want a continuous supply of fresh strawberries plant the ever bearers and to have the best of both worlds plant some of each. Strwaberries need eight hours of full sun if not they'll get a lot of leaves but not a lot of berries and they like soil thats sandy and loamy. A couple of days before planting amend the soil with a good organic compost and some high phosphorus fertilizer like this Dr. Earths bud and bloom booster.

There's two different ways to plant strawberries depending on the type. The ever bearers are planted in what we call the hill system. If you're not planting in a raised bed your going to create your own little raised bed of soil by building a little hill. A hill system bed should consist of two to three rows of plants placed a foot apart planted in a three to four foot wide hill. I'm planting ever bearers in my raised beds using the hill method and the first thing I'm gonna do is put down the irrigation which is drip tape. I'm going to put down some of this red mulching film to prevent weeds. The red color speeds up ripening and it does the same thing for tomatoes. Cut X shaped holes every twelve inches. We're gonna plant it straight down until the soil level reaches right here at the middle of the crown. If the crown is planted too low the plants will rot and too high the plant will dry out just right and you'll have a thriving strawberry plant. The easiest way is to stick your spade in make some room and put the plant in the hole. Water immediately to avoid transplant shock you can also add a little bit of kelp to the water I'm using this Thrive Alive B1. When your plant starts to grow this spring snip off any runners to encourage a large plant and make sure and snip off the first bloom of the first year after you plant and that will also help your path establish itself. June bearers are planted in what we call a matted row system. That's were we plant the strawberries in a row and then they send runners out and root themselves and make a new plant. To plant a new matted row system plant the strawberries in rows that are four feet apart and leave two feet in between plants. In a matted row we're going to use the plants runners to fill in the empty spaces as you observe your plant growing you'll see the runners begin to form and you wanna position the runners as they come off the plantso that they root in with at least six inch spacingYou can use hair pins or soil to position them make sure your plants don't get too crowded because it encourages diseases like powdery mildew pick off all the blossoms of your June bearing strawberry plant the first year and you'll forfeit the first year strawberries however the second year you'll have an abundance of fruit.

You may want to contact your local master gardeners or county ag department to find out what cultivar works the best in your area. You want to keep your beds weed free and rice straw mulch is a good option for that. The most important thing is enjoy your strawberries this summer and grow organic for life.

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Categories: Berry Plants, Strawberry Plants, Organic Weed Control, Weed Fabric, Mulch Plastic, Landscaping & Flowers, Fruits & Berries, Edible Landscaping


Michelle Says:
Mar 13th, 2012 at 4:11 pm

Are your strawberry plants organic certified?

Charlotte from Peaceful Valley Says:
Mar 14th, 2012 at 1:42 pm

Michelle, No, the plants are not certified organic; we have not been able to find a supplier with organic strawberry plants.

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