Strawberries are healthy and extremely tasty. There are many different types and varieties. The selection is important, especially if you want to harvest fresh berries over a longer period of time. It is then advisable to choose varieties that ripen differently so that the harvest time is extended. In addition to strawberries that bear once, there are also varieties that bear fruit twice or several times. Strawberry plants should not be older than three years to provide maximum yields. In very light soils, they should only be cultivated for two years. Vigor, yield and the size of the berries decrease the older the plants are. Experts swear by an annual culture.
Table of Contents
- Botanically a perennial of the rose family
- Today’s varieties are hybrids of the Chilean strawberry with the North American scarlet strawberry
- Most are hybrids
- About 20 species
- Perennial herbaceous plants
- Shooting rootstock
- Simple flowers with five petals, mostly white
- Cumulative Nut: Seeds are small nuts that sit on the thin shell of a fruiting body
A distinction is made between three forms of strawberries, the so-called green plants, frigo plants and potted plants.
- Green plants – packed in waterproof plastic bags, stay fresh for a long time, best planted in August, for a good yield next year, susceptible to drought
- Frigo plants – harvested in the winter months and stored at -2°C, on sale until July, best planted in spring, mostly used by commercial farmers, harvest can be delayed depending on when they are planted, now very popular with hobby gardeners
- Pot plants – the most common but most expensive type, grown in soil or peat substrate, have a root ball, usually offered in plastic containers, can be planted very early, around July, which will bring good yields in the coming year
When choosing, it is important to choose healthy and strong plants. They must have a strong heart bud and at least three healthy, fully developed leaves. The roots are also important. A well but not fully rooted root ball is ideal.
Planting time for strawberries
The best time to plant strawberries is early August. Then the days are nice and warm and the plants can grow well. They usually survive the winter unscathed. In addition, in the time between planting and the first frost, the flowering plants for the next year are created. So if the time is short, the harvest will be significantly smaller than if there is enough time. In exceptional cases, it can also be planted in spring, but the yield in the first year is then significantly lower. Frigo plants are best suited for spring planting. The plants are overwintered artificially, which means that they start growing in the spring shortly after planting.
It can be assumed that the earlier the planting, the higher the yield in the year of planting. This is logical, because the longer the young plant has time to develop, the more fruit it can produce. Pre-grown potted plants can be brought into the ground almost all year round.
Strawberry plants like the sun. They are best planted in full sun, because the sunnier they are, the more aromatic and sweeter the fruits will be. A sheltered spot is ideal. Completely calm is rather unfavorable, because the foliage then dries only poorly after rain or after watering, which promotes leaf diseases.
- Lots of sun and warmth
- Somewhat sheltered from the wind, but not completely without wind
Strawberry plants do not make any special demands on the soil. They get along with almost all garden soils. However, a fairly high humus content is important. Therefore, the soil should be well prepared and improved with compost, stable manure or peat dust. Humus fertilizers also have a beneficial effect.
It is essential to dig up the planned bed at least 14 days before planting and to bring in humus fertilizer on the occasion. Work in four to five liters of mature compost per square meter. Timing is critical to allow the soil to settle before planting.
- Little demanding
- High humus content and high nutrient content
- Slightly acidic soil is ideal
- loose substrate
- No heavy, waterlogged soils
- Prepare the ground well
- Improve with compost, manure or peat dust
- pH 5.5 to 6.5
Put strawberry plants
Purchased strawberry plants should be planted as soon as possible. If they need to be stored, they should be slightly damp and not in the sun. Sealed bags must be opened. Strawberry plants should never be planted too close together. In addition, the planting holes must be deep enough so that the roots are not compressed. The heart must be at ground level. When planting, it is important to fertilize immediately.
- Plant soon after purchase
- Place the root ball in water so that it can really soak up water
- Work strawberry complete fertilizer into the soil (storage fertilizer)
- Don’t plant too densely
- Row spacing 60 cm
- Planting distance in row 30 cm
- The heart of the plant must be at ground level
- Don’t crush roots
- Water vigorously
- Also water well for the next few weeks if there is no rainfall. Do not drown, it is best to give some water in the morning and evening
- Keep the area weed-free and loosen it regularly
Strawberries require plenty of nutrients. Fertilization lays the foundation for a good harvest. When digging up, about two weeks before planting, the soil must be prepared with compost and an organic fertilizer, such as horn shavings. This requires 60 to 80 g per square meter. Alternatively, you can use strawberry complete fertilizer as a storage fertilizer. The fertilizer must be incorporated thoroughly. If the strawberries are grown for several years, the same amount of fertilizer is applied again every year. It is then fertilized after the harvest. The plants are thus ideally prepared for overwintering and budding in spring.
- Strawberries need a lot of nutrients
- Use organic fertilizer
- Horn shavings or complete strawberry fertilizer
- Work well into the soil
Frequently Asked Questions
Does mulching make sense for strawberries?
The best way is to embed the strawberry plants in straw. This is called light mulching. The moisture stays in the soil longer and the berries don’t lie directly on the ground, so they don’t silt up and don’t come into constant contact with moist soil. In addition, strong weed growth is suppressed and snails also have it much more difficult.
Which strawberry varieties are particularly recommended?
That’s a matter of taste. One loves the sweet Senga Sengana, the other the aromatic Symphony. There are over 1,000 varieties, so you are spoiled for choice.
- Mieze Schindler – classic, old variety with a particularly sweet, aromatic taste, soft fruits, requires a pollinator variety
- Senga Sengana – most popular variety, particularly high-yield, dark red, very sweet and aromatic fruits, robust and hardy, tends to gray mold, freezes well
- Polka – medium-early variety, medium-sized to large fruits, dark red, sweet fruits, very adaptable, makes few demands, can also cope with changing climatic and environmental conditions
- Thuringa – large, lush berries, particularly firm, beautiful shape, intense taste, still recommended for the second year, robust, hardly susceptible to root and leaf diseases