There are various reasons why strawberries do not want to bloom, we differentiate here between strawberries planted as young plants and strawberries that you have grown yourself.

Strawberries grown as young plants

1. Obvious maintenance errors

If this is the first time you have planted strawberries, overzealous and insufficiently trained salespeople may assure you that all you have to do is put these strawberries in a balcony box, bucket, floor. A little water, a little fertilizer, and the delicious fruits appear by themselves.

That is basically correct, but even if you have a slightly different idea of ​​”correct watering” and “correct fertilization” of strawberries, you can completely mess up the plant metabolism. Until the strawberries refuse to bloom. So read through the care instructions for strawberry plants before planting the strawberries and follow them carefully with the first strawberries. The article gives beginners z. B. a good overview. If the basic care is right after checking, there are still a lot of subtleties that can spoil the mood of the strawberries.

2. Choosing the wrong variety or one that is too sensitive

From the first cross to the “garden strawberry”, over 1,000 varieties have been bred since the 18th century. Varieties for all wishes, but which can also develop very specific demands. Sensitive modern cultivars in particular cannot cope with every normal soil. These strawberry varieties mostly arise from parents who are used commercially and where patient, slow selective breeding has been replaced by influencing individual genes. If the infinitely diverse organism “metabolism” is influenced one-sidedly, this often shows negative results in other areas. Even if it was the star in the catalog: A really bitchy modern variety won’t grow 10 meters away in soil A and soil B, and you would have to research a long time to find out why.

Remedy: You can move a few more times with the variety that refuses to bloom; In the long term, however, it is certainly more relaxing and more successful if you look around among the old, robust strawberry varieties that are now being grown again by many specialist nurseries.

3. Wrong time

Plants are planted in spring? Many plants do, but strawberry plants are not necessarily. Normal strawberry plants are best planted between July and August so that they can grow well in the warmth of summer and start early next year after the subsequent hibernation to develop a rich harvest. Strawberries planted in spring only produce a few flowers in the same season under very optimal conditions, from which few, measly fruits emerge.

Remedy: Well, it just happened. Take care of them, hope for a warm summer, maybe the strawberries will develop at least enough in the same season so that you can test the taste of the variety. In the next season, the strawberries will get started all the more eagerly. In spring only so-called frigo plants should be planted, which are overwintered under special physiological conditions: After blooming in autumn, these plants are frozen and after this artificially prolonged winter they will immediately sprout if they are planted in spring; harvest begins nine weeks later.

4. Wrong soil

Strawberries love fresh soil, i.e. soil in its ideal state: loose and crumbly, but so storable that the irrigation water with the nutrients it contains does not flow past the roots too quickly. Slightly compacting soil, e.g. B. due to high clay / loam content, or wet soil due to the location, cause problems for the roots of the strawberries. If root health is compromised, it can disrupt flower development.

Remedy: Loosen the soil, in soils that are very prone to compaction or standing moisture, cultivate strawberries on small ridges that are covered with mulch film.

5. Soil fatigue

Soil fatigue, which has long been an unfathomable mystery, has tangible causes that have since been researched: This negative change in a cultivated soil is a logical consequence of monocultural land management. Each plant extracts nutrients in a certain composition from the soil, which promotes the settlement of certain microorganisms while suppressing others. If the one-sided withdrawal is not compensated for by the neighbors of other species, this will eventually destroy the ecological balance in the soil. Ecological imbalance weakens the soil life, harmful bacteria and fungi and hungry nematodes of expansive species have free rein. Rose plants in particular (which also include strawberries) quickly cause soil fatigue and should therefore not be grown several times in succession in the same location.

Remedy: Possibly soil improvement with rock flour and compost can make the strawberries bloom, underplanting or inter-planting herbs for the soil could also help. The next strawberries should be planted in another part of the garden (where no apples, pears, blackberries, raspberries, cherries, almonds, plums, roses, hawthorns were or are still growing, because these woody plants all belong to the rose family); Overall, a varied and versatile planting of the garden, crop rotation and mixed culture helps.

6. Planted too deep

If strawberries are planted too deeply, the metabolism of the plants cannot develop properly, which can disrupt the flowering system (shortly after planting).

Remedy: It is difficult for the strawberries that have been set to set the next strawberries at the right height (especially the heart in the middle needs air).

7. Incorrect nutrient supply

The most common reasons why strawberries somehow grow but not bloom can be found in the wrong supply of nutrients.

Strawberries are among the heavy eaters, so they need a fairly good supply of fertilizer. If the many leaves are growing, but do not look lush green and strong, but rather pale green, limp, uncomfortable, there is likely to be an undersupply of one or more nutrients – the strength is not enough to form flowers. But: Excess can also make you sick and uncomfortable. B. for the fact that the plant grows vigorously, but cannot take care of anything else.

Remedy: Fertilizing helps against undersupply, in the right amount and with the right nutrients. Commercially available liquid fertilizers usually contain fast-acting mineral nutrient components that have to be dosed very precisely. Against over-fertilization, stopping the fertilization and possibly interplanting of depleted herbs helps. It is easier to provide adequate nutrients with organic fertilizer, which is broken down by soil organisms and slowly made available to the plants (organic-mineral fertilizer in the balcony box, because there is not enough soil life here to break down purely organic fertilizer).

8. Other disorders of plant metabolism

If strawberries have to grow in a not very ecological environment, for example in a “conventional” (with artificial fertilizer and synthetic pesticides) tended garden, the ecological balance in the entire area often leaves something to be desired. This weakens the plants all around, pests, fungi and other diseases have an easy time of it. Every pest and every fungus that annoys strawberries in the natural garden for a while and then disappears without consequences, I can cause serious damage here. For example, weaken the strawberries so much that they cannot develop flowers. Diseases cannot be warded off by such strawberries as in a natural garden, but develop and in many cases also ensure that no flowers are developed.

Remedy: Many individual measures can be applied to the strawberries that are currently growing, depending on the respective damage (the symptom). In the long run, the constant fight against symptoms can only be avoided if the entire garden is designed to be closer to nature (which, however, makes work much easier for the hobby gardener with ongoing maintenance).

Homemade strawberries

In the case of self-grown strawberries, all of the above-mentioned causes can be involved in the fact that the strawberries refuse to flower, but there are a few other reasons:

1. Wrong parents

If you grew the strawberries yourself from the cuttings of a mother plant, it is possible that you have nurtured a cuttings that are not really viable.

The garden strawberry originated in the 18th century from the accidental crossing of the two American strawberry species Fragaria chiloensis (Chile strawberry) and Fragaria virginiana (scarlet strawberry). So this strawberry has been grown for over 200 years; In the last century, the weaknesses that regularly occur when selecting breeding according to particular strengths were eradicated through patient breeding work until robust varieties were created. Because the focus today is often not on the content, but on the profit and innovations promise more profit, the procedure is often different: instead of continuing breeding to a viable variety, the first generation crosses are often sold, the so-called F1 hybrids , with which breeding is just beginning for serious breeders.

Remedy: If you have acquired the latest breeding star, it is very possible that it will still form offshoots, but these will not survive and your strawberries will never develop a flower. You can give the little strawberries a little more time, maybe they’re just late developing; if it does not work, the next time you should get offshoots of a strawberry variety that is verifiable or visibly robust and willing to flower elsewhere.

2. Too weak mother plants or offshoots

If you took the cuttings from a mother plant that has already produced healthy, fruiting offspring, the mother plant may already be decrepit. Sometimes it then produces a particularly large number of offshoots in order to reproduce in good time, but these offshoots are no longer really capable of survival (not at all with many cultivars, they have simply given everything in terms of runners). Or you have chosen the wrong offshoot – if you want to continue propagating strawberries via subsidence, you should always only use the first plant after the mother plant, because the further runners become weaker and weaker.

Remedy: “Wrong parents”

3. Strawberries were grown from seeds

Raising from seeds is no longer possible with these plants, which have been grown back and forth a thousand times, for every variety. Seeds obtained from the fruit may or may not turn into fully developed strawberry plants; All strawberries can germinate with seeds from the bag bought, but not all strawberries are capable of flowering and fruiting; F1 varieties often refuse to develop the parts of the plant that are currently in place, even with the slightest impairment.

Remedy: You can be sure of success with seeds if you look for a specialist nursery that deals with old strawberry plants and have a variety recommended there for you to seed.

Strawberries are only safe and easy to grow if you put some effort and time into choosing the right variety. In the case of sensitive varieties, waiting and otherwise perhaps optimizing care will help, but in particularly unfavorable cases it will hardly be possible to elicit a flower from the strawberry in the season after next.

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