I cannot tell you how excited we get when we find a great deal on fresh organic strawberries at our local grocery store (can you say BOGO?)! So we decided that we would probably be even more excited if we started growing strawberries in our very own strawberry patch!
How to grow strawberries at home
We love having strawberries. They are delicious and healthy and are super easy to grow. They make a great addition to salads, cereal, oatmeal, desserts, you name it! Just like with how to freeze blueberries, you can even learn how to freeze strawberries so you can have them in the off season.
How to plant strawberries
We like to purchase started plants from a reputable organic distributor. We like to then use food grade plastic buckets for containers gardening. They are nice because you can find them pretty easily at any hardware store or sometimes you can get them from a local restaurant for free.
Using containers allows us to see which plants will survive and be healthiest when transplanting into our raised beds. Like when we learned how to plant blueberries, how to grow blackberries or how to grow tomatoes, strawberries also prefer acidic soil; around 5.5 pH. If your soil is not acidic enough, you can create this environment by using ⅓ perlite, ⅓ peat moss, and ⅓ organic compost. We also will use an organic potting soil if we do not have compost available.
When you get your plants and you are ready to either put them in a container or in your raised beds, simply dig a small hole that is a bit larger and deeper than the size of the root ball. Back fill a little of the loose soil back into the hole so the roots have loose soil to work with.
Use your hand to crumble the soil in the root ball and place it into the hole. Fill the hole around the root ball with more soil and gently pat down enough to push out any air pockets.
When to plant strawberries?
What is the best time of year to plant strawberries? Depending on your gardening zone, you will typically want to plant in early Spring. You want to be after the first frost but before it is too warm outside. Typically, when the ground is just warm enough to easily work with is when to plant strawberries.
How far apart to plant strawberries
You can plant strawberries anywhere from about 8 inches to 2 feet apart. The larger berries you want, and the more runners you transplant, the more strawberry plant spacing distance you will want so there is less competition for resources.
How long does it take for strawberries to grow?
A brand new plant started from seeds can take almost 6 months to mature. If your plant is coming out of the cold season, you can usually expect to see production start again in around 2 months.
How much sun do strawberries need?
Strawberries love water and sunlight. A good healthy plant can handle between 6 and 10 hours of sunlight a day!
How often to water strawberries
Strawberries L-O-V-E LOVE water. Especially when they are in high production. They need as much as 2 inches of water DAILY. Make sure to keep your plants hydrated so they can stay big and healthy.
When to pick strawberries
Once you start to notice your plant flowering, the fruit will be ready in about 4 to 6 weeks, according to almanac.com. You want to wait and harvesst once the fruit is completely red. To preserve your plant, you should not actually pick your strawberries but cut them by the stem.
Are Strawberry plants perennial?
Technically, yes. However with proper care, your strawberry patch can grow forever through seeds replanting and your initial plants sending out strawberry runners.
Is it hard to grow strawberries?
Not at all. Strawberries are pretty resilient and very prolific. A single plant will usually produce for around 4 to 5 years but will continue to have "offspring" plants through their runners.
Can I grow strawberries from store bought?
It is possible but does take a bit of work to harvest the seeds. It is not as simple as just sticking some strawberries into the dirt and watering them.
You will need to use a small tool, like tweezers or a toothpick, to gently remove the seed from the berry. From there you will clean them, start them on a paper towel in the fridge, allow them to germinate and ultimately move them outside. It is not a difficult process but it is a tedious and time consuming process.
That is why we recommend finding a reputable grower and purchasing started plants. It is a much easier and quicker transition to get to what you really want; delicious, juicy strawberries!
Can I grow a strawberry plant from a strawberry?
You can, but it is really unlikely that a plant will grow. In the wild, birds and other animals will eat the strawberry and pass the seed. The seed on it's own without the super moist fruit of the strawberry will have a much better chance at germination.
So, can I plant a whole strawberry and get a plant out of it? Yes, but it's not worth the trouble.
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