All About Growing Strawberries

Learn how to grow strawberries — even in containers and small spaces — to enjoy ripe berries at the very start of summer.

| October/November 2011

  • Strawberry Jam
    Strawberries marry well with lots of different flavors, including cream cheese and a freshly toasted bagel.
    KEITH WARD
  • Strawberry Types
    A bed of 25 strawberry plants can produce 30 pounds of tangy, delightful berries each year!
    ILLUSTRATION: KEITH WARD

  • Strawberry Jam
  • Strawberry Types

(For details on growing many other vegetables and fruits, visit our Crop at a Glance collection page.)

The first fruits of the summer, homegrown strawberries are a thousand times tastier than the hard, flavorless supermarket options. Strawberries are cold-hardy and adaptable, making them one of the easiest berries to grow. Growing strawberries in containers is a quick small-space solution, and they thrive in raised beds.

Types to Try

Strawberry types vary in their growth habits and fruiting times. For prolonged productivity and unique flavors, consider growing several types.

June-bearing strawberries produce their crop over three weeks from late spring to early summer. Because of their earliness, high quality and concentrated fruit set, June-bearers are the best for preserving.



Ever-bearing strawberries, also called day-neutral strawberries, produce a heavy set of berries in early summer followed by several more lighter flushes in late summer and fall. They need cool night temperatures (below 65 degrees Fahrenheit) for good fruit set. These are excellent strawberries for large containers or raised beds, where you can give them attentive watering and regular feeding.

Alpine strawberries bear dime-sized, intensely flavored berries that may be red, yellow or white, depending on the variety. Many varieties do not produce runners but do rebloom and set fruit intermittently all summer. Because of their small size, alpine strawberries are easiest to pick if grown in raised beds or roomy planters.

JimW
6/9/2018 11:31:05 PM

Pat, mulch. Straw is commonly used, snails probably don't like gliding across it. I'd like to try comfrey leaves but haven't gotten around to it yet.


JimW
6/9/2018 11:24:55 PM

Mulch Pat. Straw is commonly used, several benefits one being a boundary layer between dirt and raw food. I'd like to try comfrey leaves but haven't gotten around to it yet. I imagine snails and slugs wouldn't like traveling across the hairy leaves, but I'm not sure until I try it.


Pat
5/25/2018 6:11:50 PM

What's the best way to keep the fruits out of the dirt? I've tried draping them over old plastic containers, but it's not been very successful ...







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