My new favorite thing to do is picking strawberries as I walk from my car to the porch.
I planted 7 strawberry plants in a sunny new garden bed I created from a patch of lawn.
My Albion Strawberry plants are pumping out plump, sweet, juicy red berries every day.
As to be expected from Monrovia plants.
Truth be told, this is actually my first strawberry patch.
I have grown them in pots before, but never in the ground.
Wanting a fruitful patch year after year I did my research before planting & it is paying off in pints of yummy strawberries.
Today I am sharing what I learned & my simple growing strawberries tips with you.
Firstly, know there are generally three types of strawberries:
- June bearing – fruit in June
- Spring bearing – fruit early spring
- Everbearing – fruit spring thru autumn
What Strawberry Plants Need to Thrive
Meet the simple needs of this plentiful perennial & you will not need to buy a pint again.
- Eight hours of direct sun
- lots of water
- excellent drainage
- loamy, composted, slightly acidic soil
How to Plant a Strawberry
Strawberry plants like to be planted with the crown ( the part of the plant where the stems & roots meet ) at soil level.
Many plants like to be “crown high” not strawberries.
Generally plant strawberries in the spring, but in mild climates you can plant in the fall as well.
First dig a hole 2x the size of your plant. Amend the soil in the hole and in the surrounding bed with organic compost.
Make sure the soil has excellent drainage.
Do this by filling up the hole 2x with water, letting drain completely in between. If it takes more than 5 minutes for the hole to drain you need to add more loamy soil. Mix in some sand with the compost.
Filling the planting hole with water not only tells you whether the soil has good drainage, it serves to give the new plant moisture deep in the hole.
Water is really vital to a strawberry plant, not only for the roots but the entire structure of the plant. Water makes the strawberry plant stay upright. Without enough hydration the plant will wilt.
Hole dug, drainage tested, tuck in your plants. Space them 14 – 18 inches apart. Water gently and deeply.
June & spring bearing fertilize 2x a year before growth & after fruiting. Everbearing fertilize every two weeks.
Mulch strawberries in the winter in cold climates.
Caring for a New Strawberry Plant
Make sure your strawberry plants are getting lots of sun & water. Don’t let them wilt before you water. Be proactive with hydration & you will reap the sweet rewards.
Also, do something that might seem counter intuitive. Pinch some flowers & the runners.
Strawberry plants produce “runners” off the main plant. That is how you get more strawberry plants.
For your new plants in their first season you want to pinch off some flowers & the runners. This is because you want your plants to focus their energies on creating a strong root system. The initial focus is growth under the soil not on top.
Check often & under the leaves. Berries go from green, to red, to gone ( critters ) fast.
Once they are red you can & should pick them.
Just pinch the stem with your thumbnail and it lands in your hand.
Look for runners to pinch off at the same time.
I am getting about a full handful each day from the 7 plants.
To get a pint a day about 25 plants is the right number.
Additional Strawberry Planting Tips
Don’t plant strawberries in a bed where tomatoes, peppers or eggplants were planted until at least 3 years after those crops.
Buy the best plants you can find. These would be Monrovia strawberry plants.
The Albion Strawberry, the one I planted, is the perfect dessert strawberry due to its high sugar content.
Bursting with sweetness, this everbearing plant is high yielding, tolerates heat and humidity, and has excellent disease resistance.
I know many of you already agree that Monrovia has the most reliable plants on the market. Find a retailer or buy plants on line here.
May as well give your patch a head start. I was harvesting berries 2 days after planting my Monrovia plants and they have not slowed down since hitting the dirt!
Are you planting anything edible this year?
** Kelly **
Have an abundance of strawberries? Make this recipe.
Monrovia and I are collaborating on a garden, that being said my opinion on their plants is mine. Heck, I pursued them to work with me on my garden because of their fabulous plants! I would never steer you wrong especially in the garden!