How To Grow Strawberries

Strawberries are so much fun to grow! They are very versatile and will grow in loads of different places from beds to hanging baskets. Even vertical gardens! If you want to see the variation in places that these guys will thrive in then check out our post on Top 10 DIY Strawberry Planters.

As a native to our green lands, they will do well in British weather but have also earnt their place in gardens worldwide. 

Quick Guide

Perennial (replace after four years)

Hardiness
Hardy
Sunshine
Full Sun
Watering
Water Well

Plant 35cm apart

Climbing Tendrils

strawberry-plant

varieties

There are two different types of strawberry; summer-fruiting and ever-bearers. As the name suggests the main difference is the time of year you harvest.

Summer-fruiting varieties have a very short harvesting period lasting a couple of weeks. The strawberries, however, are the biggest juiciest ones you can get so it does pay off. There are early, mid, and late varieties cropping from early to mid-summer.

Ever-bearers produce small bunches of fruit from early summer to early autumn. The fruits are smaller but you get a much steadier supply 

alice

This summer-fruiting (mid-summer) variety have beautiful juicy fruits and are resistant to diseases are very quick to grow.

Aromel

A hardy ever-bearer with juicy fruits of a really good size.

mara de bois

Reliable and tasty, this is one of the best ever-bearers with super sweet fruits that remind me of wild strawberries. 

honeoye

An early summer-bearer with glossy dark berries that have a tangy flavour 

soil

Strawberries enjoy well-drained soil with plenty of well-rotted organic matter (fresh manure can burn the fragile roots). Straw (the clue is in the name) is a very good mulching material for young plants that can be killed off by weeds.

You can plant strawberries in all types of weird and wonderful places. The soil is better being slightly acidic, peat or manure based compost are the best for increasing acidity so chuck some in before you plant. 

Timing

As a perennial, harvesting is the main task with strawberries once they are established. You should plant your young plants or runners in their designated location in early spring.

Time of harvest will depend on your variety as there is a tonne of different options. You could even plant a few different types and have strawberries from spring through till autumn. 

planting

  • A sunny and sheltered spot
  • Make sure compost is well rotted for nutrients and soil texture
  • Make sure you fan the roots our around the hole and the crown of the plant is not lower than soil around it or the plant may rot
  • Place each plant 35cm from other plants and ensure the hole is the right depth
  • Avoid planting in soil that has homed potatoes or tomatoes as they are susceptible to the same diseases as strawberries.

companion planting

Strawberries do well with a selection of other plants such as beans, herbs like borage which help fix nitrogen in the soil, perfect for strawberry plants. 

However, it is important to remember that strawberries can be pretty prolific and if you’re not careful you may end up with a dense matt of strawberry runners. 

I like to plant my strawberries in contained verticle planters so they don’t grow too crazy but if you are putting them in mixed beds try to plant them with established plants that wont be overrun. 

care

  • Water well during spring if the rain doesn't do the job for you and mulch with well-rotted compost or straw
  • Mulching is especcially important when the fruits start to develop as it keeps them clean and un-squashed
  • Apart from tidying up or harvesting very little pruning is needed

harvest

As with most fruit, strawberries are nice and easy to harvest. Once the berries are bright red and plump simply pick them off and enjoy as soon as possible.

As there is a lot of different fruiting times make sure to check the variety that you have so you don’t loose the race with the birds to the berries.

Storing

Once harvested strawberries will last about a week in the fridge. You can also freeze them for smoothies or jam them up if you have loads extra. 

strawberries-gutter-planter

We hope that you’ve enjoyed our article and that it has inspired you to turn your green hands to a new challenge.

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