Everbearing strawberries are exceptionally easy to grow and make a nice addition for the home gardener. Like some plants, strawberries don’t need a lot of space.
For many years I would frequent the pick-your-own farms for fresh fruits such as strawberries, raspberries and blueberries. I would turn the collection into juice, jelly, jam and the rest would be flash frozen for later use.
But now, I have decided to bring the everbearing strawberries into my yard. It is so convenient walking out your door to pick the perfectly sweet dish of berries. I like to top coconut pancakes with strawberries and whipped cream.
GROWING EVERBEARING STRAWBERRIES MINI GUIDE
There are two types of strawberries that you can grow. They are June bearers which fruit once from June into the first part of July in the Northeast. And there are everbearing which bears strawberries from summer until the first frost.
Once you have determined your growing zone you will be able to choose which strawberry will work best for you. Here, I’m growing Tribute and Ozark everbearing strawberries. I prefer having strawberries over a longer duration and I find that they really have a good steady output.
Bare root strawberry plants are relatively cheap with most mail order nurseries selling twenty-five for $8-10. They ship both fall and spring. I prefer to do all my planting in the spring where I have gotten better results.
I have planted all of the strawberries in wooden boxes. This allows for mobility and I have taken full advantage of that. We’ve had the boxes of strawberries growing on our front steps and in various parts of our vegetable garden. This year they have a new place in the blueberry patch.
Strawberries are self-pollinating which means that your plants will set fruit without the aid of another strawberry variety or bees. This is because each flower carries both the male and female reproductive parts. Wind or other movements will take care of the pollination process.
Strawberry plants grow best in drained loamy soil with an average level of moistness. Into the wooden strawberry boxes that we use I put a mixture of top soil, sand, and mushroom compost. Plants should be in a location that receives full sun.
In the springtime, after the leaves are out, I feed the plants with strawberry food. This gives the plants specific nutrients helpful in the growth of the plants. This also leads to healthy and productive berries that have a sweet and firm texture. Strawberry plant food can be applied every week or two during the growing season.
You will notice that your new plants will blossom in May and June but if you pick those first blossoms off you will have a larger crop from July till frost. I know this can be hard to do especially when your mouth is watering for those first berries.
Once fall rolls around you will want to cover the berry plants with straw to keep them from freezing over the winter. In the spring as the plants grow, they will pop right through the top coating of straw. The straw will then make a nice layer around the plants and prevent weeds from growing.
The second-year plants will not require you to pluck any blossoms and you will have a full harvest from spring till frost.
AN EASY WAY TO ADD MORE STRAWBERRY PLANTS
To increase the number of plants you have, allow the runner plants to root in a separate small pot of dirt. Note, if runner plant doesn’t have roots yet, wait until it does before proceeding.
Direct the runner plant to the pot and hold it in place with a landscape fabric staple. You can even make something similar from a metal coat hanger.
Always remember to have leaves going upwards and gently push roots into the soil. Secure plant and once roots take hold cut the runner from the mother plant.
If you miss this growing season, you can still enjoy fresh strawberries by supporting your local pick-your-own farm.
If this post resonated with you, then check out Foraging to Supplement Your Food Budget.