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Upper South: Strawberries?

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Upper South: Strawberries?

Post  pattipan on 4/13/2010, 11:33 am

Question for all you Upper South folks...

Are you growing strawberries in your SFG? If you are, what types are you growing and at what stage are they this mid-April? Did you make a special tiered box for them...or are they occupying a few squares in you boxes? anyone growing them in containers?

I bought some Tribute (day-neutral type) from Burpee. I ordered a little late for my zone 6a, and just received them yesterday! I am going to plant them today and I think I'm going to grow them in these old crates I have in the garage. I'll use Mel's Mix of course!

So, let's hear about your strawberries, okay?

Patti
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Re: Upper South: Strawberries?

Post  pattipan on 4/13/2010, 2:16 pm

Got my strawberries planted! My DH said it took me longer to figure out how I wanted to place the boxes than the actual planting...true! We're supposed to have a light rain this afternoon, so I think I timed just right. :-) I'll take pictures this summer to show the progress!

Patti

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My strawberries

Post  ander217 on 4/13/2010, 8:44 pm

This is my first year to try SFG, and our first boxes are devoted to veggies, so my strawberries are still growing in a flower bed in front of my house. I use them as edible landscaping, and we previously had two rows lining our front walk, but we mowed those plants down last year after bearing, and we set out 25 Earli-Glo plants in a new square bed. It was so hard pulling off all the flowers that set last spring on the new plants, but I did it and it paid off. Now this year the plants are covered in blooms, and they are already making berries. (Freezer jam and strawberry shortcake, here we come!)

We have two half-grown pups, and they discovered that my new strawberry bed is a VERY comfortable place for sleeping. My husband finally fixed them. He placed tomato cages on their sides all through the plants. The plants grew right threw them, but the dogs can't find a space to lie down now. The cages looked a little unsightly at first, but the plants are now large enough that we only see a little metal showing here and there. (And it's better than huge bare spots!)
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Re: Upper South: Strawberries?

Post  pattipan on 4/13/2010, 11:11 pm

@ander217 wrote:...we set out 25 Earli-Glo plants in a new square bed. It was so hard pulling off all the flowers that set last spring on the new plants, but I did it and it paid off. Now this year the plants are covered in blooms, and they are already making berries. (Freezer jam and strawberry shortcake, here we come!)

I thought about putting our strawberries in one of our SFG boxes, but all our squares are taken for this year. Can't wait to see the vines draping over the rims. I understand one should remove the first blooms and berries...it will be very hard to do!

I can just pictures your pups laying among the berry plants! We had a dog who had a fetish for compost. We had to cage and cover everything!

Patti
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strawberry Questions

Post  Gardenlover770 on 4/20/2010, 9:57 pm

Can you tell me why you are removing the first blooms and first fruit?

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Removing First fruits

Post  ander217 on 4/21/2010, 9:03 am

New strawberry plants will begin blooming within a short time of being transplanted. They need to put all their energies into developing strong roots and leaves, so June bearers should have all their blooms removed the first year they are planted, and everbearers and day neutrals should have their blooms removed for the first couple of months - until around July 1st.

If you force yourself to do this, the plants will grow larger and stronger by the next blooming period and will produce more berries over a longer period. They will also be able to withstand more stress from such things as drought or disease.

If you want to experiment for yourself, try removing the flowers from some and leaving them on others, and measure the total harvest from those plants over a three-year period.

Good luck with your berries!
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Re: Upper South: Strawberries?

Post  pattipan on 4/21/2010, 6:29 pm

@Gardenlover770 wrote:Can you tell me why you are removing the first blooms and first fruit?

As ander217 stated, you remove the first blooms and berries to make stronger plants. The paper I got from Burpee with my plants, recommended this as well.

Since I have five containers, I'm going to experiment and see if it makes a difference. I'll remove as instructed from 3 of the containers and will leave 2 alone. I'll let you know how it goes! If I forget to report, remind me, okay?

Patti
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I planted 'Seascape'

Post  gwynnguyz on 4/21/2010, 7:01 pm

I got nice Seascape plants at a Farmer's Market in Harrisonburg last weekend 6/$5 and planted then on the south side of my house. I hope it doesn't get too hot! Seascape Bed


Last edited by gwynnguyz on 4/21/2010, 7:15 pm; edited 1 time in total (Reason for editing : tried to include photo link)

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First Berry!

Post  ander217 on 4/28/2010, 9:31 am

Dear Husband and I shared our first ripe strawberry yesterday. There was only one, so I VERY carefully cut it in half and we shared our little bite of ambrosia with smiles on our faces.

Is there any strawberry that ever tastes better than the first ripe strawberry of the season?
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Re: Upper South: Strawberries?

Post  pattipan on 4/28/2010, 12:14 pm

@ander217 wrote:Dear Husband and I shared our first ripe strawberry yesterday. There was only one, so I VERY carefully cut it in half and we shared our little bite of ambrosia with smiles on our faces.

Is there any strawberry that ever tastes better than the first ripe strawberry of the season?


Heehee...I can just picture you cutting that precious strawberry in half. I'm looking forward to doing the same!

It didn't quite get down to freezing temps last night, but I still covered my berries. I was NOT taking any chances!

Patti
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Re: Upper South: Strawberries?

Post  Megan on 5/1/2010, 6:56 pm

I'm starting some strawberries from seed in a container, though there are some backups planted in jiffy pucks. Good luck to everyone with theirs!
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Yesterday's strawberry harvest

Post  ander217 on 5/6/2010, 7:22 am

I'm really pleased with the amount of strawberries being produced in the bed in front of our house. However, I believe next time I need to replant the berries I will definitely set them out in a container on a table to make it easier to pick them. In fact, now that I think on it, I should be getting that container made now, and move some runners to it for next year.

This was yesterday's harvest.

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Re: Upper South: Strawberries?

Post  pattipan on 5/6/2010, 12:23 pm

@ander217 wrote:
This was yesterday's harvest.



Yum! Can't wait to eat the first berries off my plants! They are looking really good now. I'll take a few pictures later so you can see.

Patti
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