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All About: Strawberries

Category: Gardening Tips | Posted by: Mike Forste

Who doesn’t like the taste of a fresh-picked strawberry? Reminiscent of hot summer days, cooling off with the hose, and smelling fresh cut grass throughout the neighborhood. Plant your own patch to ensure future delightful memories such as these, while also getting the satisfaction of growing your own delicious, nutritious treat!

There are 3 different categories of strawberries: June-bearing, ever-bearing, and day-neutral.


June-bearing varieties will produce a large crop once a year in mid-Summer. Two varieties that we will be carrying this Spring are:

  • ‘All Star’ – large, juicy fruit with medium firmness which is produced in the first year! The most popular variety for home gardeners. Resistant to verticillium wilt.
  • ‘Honeoye’ – earlier harvest than most. Received the Award of Garden Meritfrom the Royal Horticultural Society. One of the top producing varieties for decades, excellent taste after freezing.

Take advantage of the bountiful harvest of June-bearing varieties to freeze, dehydrate, and can the abundance of fruit!


Ever-bearing will have 2-3 crops per year, once in the late Spring and again in Summer and Fall, becoming less significant as the season passes. A popular variety we will be carrying this Spring is ‘Ozark Beauty,’ which is a high-yield plant with super sweet fruit and bright red color.


Day-neutral are cold-hardy and shade-tolerant, but will stop producing during a drought and are generally less flavorful and somewhat smaller berries.

Planting Tips:

Strawberries are perennial in zones 4-9. Maintain the plants by weeding regularly and by occasionally thinning, this will allow for better growth and fruit production.

Plant with our White Oak Organic Planting Mix! Perfect to help break up hard clay soils to provide the drainage that your strawberries need to succeed! Work into the top few inches of the soil (2-6’’ depth).

Plant in rows 18’’ apart, with the rows 3’ apart from each other.

Recommended to remove all/most blooms and leave a few runners during first growing season to force plant to focus on root production. This will help ensure a larger harvest next year. (More roots = more nutrient intake = more fruit!)

Strawberries like slightly acidic soil (6.5-6.8 pH) with high nutrients that can drain easily.

Use Espoma BerryTone to fertilize in early Spring.

They will benefit from a layer of mulching to retain moisture. We recommend straw, shredded wood ships or pine bark … we have straw bales and we sell bagged mulch!

Remove any plant material that has signs of fungal growth.

Strawberries will benefit from occasional thinning from year to year once established.

You can plant them in hanging baskets, porch pots, raised beds. Containerized planting helps ensure drainage and can allow it to be used in a more decorative manner.

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