Strawberries are a delicious, nutritious and beautiful addition to any garden. Growing strawberries is easy, but there are a few things you should know before planting them.
- Prepare your garden bed
Strawberries grow best in full sun and well-drained soil. If your soil is heavy or you have clay soil, add compost or organic fertilizer before planting. Strawberries like a pH of 6-6.5, so if your soil is on the acidic side, add lime before planting.
Strawberries prefer well-draining soil that is rich in nutrients. If your soil isn’t already rich in nutrients, add compost before planting your strawberries. You can also add other amendments like leaf mold or well-rotted manure before planting your strawberry plants.
- Pick a sunny spot
Strawberries prefer full sun to partial shade, so look for an area that gets at least six hours of sunshine each day. A raised bed or container makes it easier to control soil moisture and temperature.
- Choose the right variety
When choosing which variety to plant, consider whether you want to pick early or late-season berries — some varieties produce earlier than others. Additionally, some varieties are better suited for warmer climates than others
- Plant your strawberries
Most strawberry varieties need a minimum of one month of chill time (when they are dormant) before they will bloom and produce fruit. Plant your strawberry plants in spring or fall, depending on the local weather conditions where you live. If spring planting is too late for your area, consider growing them in a container so that they can be moved indoors if necessary. You should also consider protecting them from cold temperatures with a row cover or plastic mulch during winter months if you live in a colder climate zone than recommended for your variety (check the tag on the plant for specific information).
- Fertilize with compost or manure after planting, then water regularly until harvest time in early summer when it rains less often in most areas of the country.