Strawberry: First Steps P Find source of virus-free plants: normally planting lasts 3 to 4 years P Strawberries should not be planted after tomatoes, peppers, eggplants, or potatoes because they can be a source of Verticillium wilt P Choose cultivar(s)
Types of Strawberries P June Bearers: Produce crop in May. Produces more total fruit than other types. P Everbearers: Produce crop in May and again in late-summer to early fall. Some berries produced in summer. P Day-Neutrals: Like everbearers but more fruit during summer. However, flower production inhibited above 70 / F.
VarietySeasonBerry QualityFreezer Quality EarliglowEarlyVery goodGood RedchiefMidVery good SurecropMidGoodVery good CardinalMidVery good GuardianMid-lateGood AllstarMid-lateVery good June Bearing Varieties
VarietyBerry QualityFreezer Quality OgallalaGoodVery good Ozark BeautyVery good Everbearing Varieties
Planting Preparation P Choose sunny, well-drained site and mix in organic matter
Planting Preparation P Choose sunny, well-drained site and mix in organic matter P Fertilization < Fertilize according to soil test < Or apply 10 to 12 pounds of a 10-10-10 fertilizer per 1000 square feet and work into soil with organic matter
Planting Procedures P String line so planting is straight P Keep roots moist
Planting Depth P Too shallow and roots may dry P Too deep and may smother crown
Spacing Plants P Space plants 18 to 24 inches apart in rows 3 1/4 to 4 feet apart
Strawberry, Water In After Planting P Use about 1 cup of water per plant
Keep Planting Watered Can use trickle irrigation or overhead watering
Remove Blossoms the First Year P Plant has a limited amount of energy P Energy needs to go into runners rather than fruit
Runner Spacing P Runner spacing. Space plants 4 to 6 inches apart. Extra runners should be removed, if possible. Keep bed width to 12 to 18 inches P I usually thin runners in August
Fall Care Strawberries set fruit buds as the days shorten in September and October. P Fertilize in late August to early September. Apply about 3/4 to 1 pound of a 12-12-12 fertilizer per 25 feet of row. P Keep planting watered and weeded. P Fall care determines the size of next year ’ s crop!
Preparing the Crop for Winter P Make sure the strawberries go into the winter with the soil moist. P Mulch the plants when weather turns cold; normally sometime between Thanksgiving and mid-December.
Mulching P Not trying to protect the plants from cold as much as from alternate freezing and thawing. P If you use straw, should require about 1 bale for every 100 feet of row
Second and Succeeding Years Care Spring P Pull mulch off when new growth reaches 1 to 2 inches (usually in March). Remove just enough mulch that new leaves can poke through. P Don ’ t fertilize! Too much nitrogen makes the berries soft and prone to rot. P Irrigate as needed. Water deficiencies can lead to small berries.
How to Protect Blooms P Remember first berries are king berries; the largest berries of the season. P If a frost is forecast, protect blooms by: < Covering planting with blanket < Running overhead irrigation all night until ice is melted
Bloom and Harvest Manhattan Area P Bloom usually starts about mid-April P Harvest starts the second week of May P Harvest usually lasts about 3 weeks P About 1 quart of berries per plant if well cared for
Renovation Done immediately after harvest to rejuvenate plants
Renovation Second Step: Gather and Discard Leaves
Renovation Third Step: Fertilize with 1 pound 10-10-10 per 25 feet of row
Renovation Fourth Step: Narrow row to 10 inches
After Renovation P Keep planting watered. P Plants should have recovered in about 2 weeks. P Fertilize again in late August to early September. P Mulch for the winter after several hard freezes. P Replace planting when production falls off or every 3 to 4 years.