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Growing Strawberry Plants

Jan F M A M J J A S O N Dec
        P P            

(Best months for growing Strawberry Plants in USA - Zone 5a regions)

P = Plant out (transplant) seedlings

  • Easy to grow. Plant with crown (of roots) just covered.. Best planted at soil temperatures between 50°F and 68°F. (Show °C/cm)
  • Space plants: 12 - 39 inches apart
  • Harvest in approximately 11 weeks. Strawberries bruise easily when ripe, handle carefully. Pick with a small piece of stem attached..
  • Compatible with (can grow beside): Better in a bed on their own to allow good sun and air circulation
  • Avoid growing close to: If you are using rotation beds, avoid putting strawberries where you have grown tomatoes, potatoes, peppers or eggplant
  • Ripening fruit
  • Strawberry plants

Strawberries are low-growing, leafy plants,between 12-15cm (about 6 inches) high and will spread to about 50-100cm (20-40 inches). They have five petalled flowers, usually white or sometimes pink. The flowers are followed by delicious red fruits, which have their seeds on the outside. Later in the season, the plants send out runners like thin stems, across the garden. They will take root to form new plants. Cut them off and leave the parent growing.

At the end of fruiting, trim off old yellow leaves and clean up any mouldy fruit still attached.

Strawberries like well drained soil with plenty of humus . To prepare your bed, dig in some compost before planting and possibly use a liquid fertiliser during the growing season. Well fed strawberries taste better. To protect the fruit from moulds, use some form of mulch around the plants. Straw, pine needles, or black plastic are all suitable. Mulch will also help suppress weeds. Protect your plants with some sort of netting or bird scarer or you will lose most of your crop.

Culinary hints - cooking and eating Strawberry Plants

Pick strawberries and eat them straight from the garden - warm from the sunshine, delicious!

Strawberries can be used in any dessert needing soft fruit or berries. Summer pudding which also has raspberries and blackberries or boysenberries, mousse, trifle, dipped in melted chocolate or just with cream.
Sprinkle a bowl of strawberries with balsamic vinegar and a little sugar to enhance the flavour and colour.

Your comments and tips

28 Oct 18, Caroline Burnell (New Zealand - temperate climate)
Do I cut off the leaves on my strawberries that are growing in a raised garden and covered with netting so that the sun can ripen them? Thanks Caroline
30 Oct 18, Mike (New Zealand - temperate climate)
NO - strawberries take about 4 weeks from flowering to ripe fruit. Keep cutting the leaves and the plant will probably die. Plants need leaves to take in the sunlight.
23 Aug 18, Mike (Australia - sub-tropical climate)
Continued about planting strawbs in sub tropical climate. Buy new stock and plant April/May. You can either plant runners from these next year and do that in future years, After about 6 years start with new stock again. Or leave the new plants in for two crops. Then plant new runners from these plants and do the same again. After doing this 3 times (six years) start with new stock again. Between the first and second crop with the same plants trim off all new runners. I will be putting my strawbs on weed mat next year. Also if you can put an irrigation system in the soil or under the mulch. If watering overhead do it in the morning (so the leaves and fruit dry out quickly) rather than late arvo.
02 Sep 18, Jane (Australia - sub-tropical climate)
Mike, thankyou for all your valued advice. I'm up for the challenge. Appreciated!!
18 Aug 18, Jane (Australia - sub-tropical climate)
Love this article on strawberries. Thanks for it.
20 Aug 18, Mike (Australia - sub-tropical climate)
Also when planting new runner plants - trim most of the leaves off - but leave a couple of the newer small leaves in the middle. And most important - where the leaves come out of the plant, is the crown of the plant, When planting DO NOT cover the crown with soil - have it sticking out of the soil a bit.
31 Aug 18, Jane (Australia - sub-tropical climate)
Mike thanks for yr strawberry posts. Appreciated. Will do.
20 Aug 18, Mike (Australia - sub-tropical climate)
A run down on growing strawberries in sub tropical areas. You should start with fresh stock from nursery or online etc. Plant them early to mid April - some shops will sell plants anytime of the year.
03 Aug 18, Ken ODonnell (Australia - temperate climate)
Why do my strawberries go mouldy ? I have them in raised garden pots and on mulch. The 1st fruits didnt go mouldy . Thankyou,
18 Aug 18, Jane (Australia - sub-tropical climate)
Hi Ken, sorry to hear you're having mold problems with yr strawberries. I', not in your zone and although I am currently growing 4 strawberry plants that were a gift to me (I have them under a roughly-made 'cloche-shaped' wire because something trampled some of my vegies - possum or some such). They are looking healthy although I am fairly certain (not 100% and have not checked) that like tomatoes, they do not like to have their leaves wet (says me. who often wets them both). and that this causes all sorts of diseases, one of which may be mold (it would make sense)? I am a newbie gardener and learning as I go. But do check such things as watering (frequently/infrequently - can be a problem and cause diseases) feeding, etc. esp in this case things like strawberry diseases (Australia), etc. Also, try to buy old seed, heirlooms etc. A basil disease that has been in the USA for about ten years has now hit Australia. As far as I know it is in Qld and Northern NSW. One person admitted selling diseased basil seeds. I could be jumping the gun but I believe this would not happen with old varieties. Best *PS Can someone tell me whether or not I can plant out various and different seedlings, (instead of) where the Gardenate planting reminder mailout says 'sow seed? Thanks in advance.
Showing 1 - 10 of 208 comments

Anyone with cambridge rival strawberry runners to sell? I live in sydney and can arrange payment and postage . Thanks.

- Em

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This planting guide is a general reference intended for home gardeners. We recommend that you take into account your local conditions in making planting decisions. Gardenate is not a farming or commercial advisory service. For specific advice, please contact your local plant suppliers, gardening groups, or agricultural department. The information on this site is presented in good faith, but we take no responsibility as to the accuracy of the information provided.
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