How to Grow Strawberries
No green thumb? No problem. Strawberries are easy to grow…really. Follow these simple steps and think about getting the kiddos involved. This is a gardening adventure where they will love eating what they grow. A few rows of plants will fill your fruit bowl or freezer all summer long, and with so many strawberry recipes to choose from, these little berries will never get old.
Step 1: Find a place to grow…
You want a section of land that has good drainage and gets a least 6 hours of sun a day—a sloping, south-facing plot of land is perfect. If your soil drains poorly, use a raised bed or container. To find instructions for a simple DIY container, click here.
Step 2: Buy your plants
The easiest way to grow strawberries is to buy a few young plants. Strawberry plants decrease in yield after a few years, so it’s best to buy plants from a reputable nursery.
Growing from seeds is a little cheaper but takes quite a bit more patience. Here’s how!
Step 3: Plant away
Dig in compost and an organic fertilizer and allow for around 11 inches of soil for the roots to take hold. Strawberries like slightly acidic soil with a pH between 5.5 and 6.5. Plant your rows 4 feet apart and allow for 24 inches between each plant. The mother plants will create plantlets and runners that spread through your garden. Cut off runners when they appear so that your plants use their energy for fruit production instead of growth.
Step 4: Show them some love
The first year you plant, remove all the flowers from your strawberries so the roots have a chance to establish a good hold on the soil before they produce. Add a little straw mulch and some slug control spray to protect your berries from rot and insect infestation. Keep your plants well watered throughout the growing season, and add a little fertilizer after they fruit for the first time.