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How to Grow Strawberries
Choosing the Right Strawberry Plants
Before selecting your strawberry plants, determine where you plan to grow them. Strawberries require full sun (6 or more hours of direct sunlight daily) and well-drained soil. Also, note your grow zone. Some strawberry varieties are more suitable for warmer climates, while others are very cold hardy. You'll want to buy strawberry plants that are suitable for your grow zone. Use our zone finder to check out all of our information and recommendations before planting your strawberry plants.
Many gardeners grow strawberries in their garden, while others incorporate them into their perennial flower beds. Strawberry bushes can also be grown in raised beds, barrels, our Strawberry Tiered Planter, or Grow Tub Strawberry Tower. The variety you choose to grow is a matter of preference and your space requirements.
Different Types of Strawberries
Strawberries fall into three different types.
Junebearing strawberries produce a large crop in late May or June. If you want a lot of strawberries at once, select these. June-bearing strawberries also require the most room because they have the most runners.
Everbearing strawberries usually produce two or three crops beginning in early summer. Their yields are generally not as large as Junebearing types. They don't produce as many runners, which make them more suitable for container gardening or smaller spaces.
Day neutral Strawberries
Day neutral strawberries produce fruit throughout the growing season. They're favorites for gardeners who enjoy nibbling on strawberries throughout the summer--and they're also suitable for container gardening and smaller spaces.
Strawberry Plants: Getting the Most out of Your Purchase
Strawberries are usually planted in the spring. Most gardeners buy bareroot strawberries or potted strawberry plants.
Getting Started with Strawberry Plants
Strawberry plants can be planted in the springtime once the ground can be worked. Most gardeners buy bareroot strawberries or potted strawberry plants. Set the plants, so the crown is at the soil level when planting strawberries. If growing Junebearing strawberries, remove the blossoms the first year after planting. This allows the plant's energies to go into root and plant development. If growing everbearing or day neutral varieties, remove the blossoms during the first flush or until the end of June during the first year after planting.
How to Prune Strawberry Bushes
Unlike many other fruit plants, strawberry plants do not require heavy pruning. Some gardeners will lightly prune or trim runners in late summer.
How to Fertilize Strawberry Plants
Strawberry plants are heavy feeders, and we recommend Gurney's Strawberry Food. This slow-release, all-natural fertilizer provides strawberry plants the nitrogen and nutrients they need. Scratch fertilizer into the soil at planting time, and then fertilize strawberry plants in the spring and late summer.
How to Winterize Strawberry Plants
In the fall, mulch the strawberry plants with 2-6 inches of straw. Gardeners in northern climates should use a thicker mulch than gardeners in southern regions. Remove some of the mulch in the spring when growth starts to appear. Leaving some straw helps retain moisture, reduce weeds and keep the berries clean.