Container Gardening: How to Grow Strawberries
Published By melissamurphy on 2011-08-28 75 Views
Nothing says “fresh” like a big, juicy strawberry and growing strawberries can be simple because they are plants that are well-suited to container gardening. Perfect for apartment balconies or small patios, strawberries cultivated in containers will produce fruit with very little maintenance.
Choosing a Container
Although strawberries can be grown in any plant container, pots made specifically for strawberries are a particularly attractive and practical solution for growing your strawberry crop. These specialized pots are made with built-in pockets along the outer perimeter of the pot. Strawberry pots are made in all sizes and can accommodate several individual strawberry plants. The same concept is applied to another product called a grow bag. The grow bag is made of tough material and has a handle at the top that can be hung on plant hangers.
Varieties of Strawberry Plants
There are basically three types of strawberries: June-bearing, day-neutral, and ever-bearing.
June-bearing varieties are very common and very popular because they produce large, juicy fruit. As the name implies, June-bearing strawberries set an abundance of fruit around the month of June, but the plants only bear for about two weeks, on average.
Ever-bearing strawberries usually produce a moderate crop of strawberries in the spring and again in the fall. Under ideal condition, ever-bearers may produce three harvests in a year’s time.
Day-neutral varieties produce berries when the temperature is between 35-85 degrees. In some climates, this means fresh berries in winter. Although sweet, the fruit of day-neutral strawberries is quite a bit smaller than the other varieties.
Caring for Container Strawberries
Plant your strawberry plants in potting mix that is specifically made for container gardening and that is rich in organic matter. Strawberries have shallow root system and need to be kept moist without becoming water-logged, therefore proper drainage is essential for growing strawberries in containers. Do not allow your strawberries to dry out as this will cause the plants to cease fruit production.
Fertilizing strawberries is equally important. Strawberries are heavy feeders and will need to be fertilized with a good quality 10-10-10 fertilizer every couple of weeks.
Of all of the fruit grown in the garden, one of the most-loved is the strawberry. Whether in a pretty strawberry pot or regular planter, all varieties will grow well in any container that has adequate drainage. Maintenance is also easy. Strawberries only require a few essentials to produce an abundance of berries: plenty of sun, regular fertilizing and water.