Monday, September 12
Strawberry Plants for Your Home Garden
Sun- kissed strawberries are a must have for every home garden. The beautiful red color, distinctive aroma and irresistible taste make it every gardener’s favorite fruit. The versatility of strawberries is such that it is used in wide range of preparations like jams, jellies, cakes, syrups, pies, ice creams, shakes, etc. You can prepare delicious and mouth watering deserts with home grown strawberries and everyone would love them.
Selecting Strawberries for the garden - Garden strawberries come in three major varieties which are Day neutral strawberries, June bearing strawberries and Everbearing strawberries. Everbearing and Day neutral can be grown if you have limited space. These varieties take less space as compared to June bearing strawberries. June bearing plant produces larger fruit than the other two types.
Planting Strawberry plants - Strawberry plants are planted in spring as soon as the ground is wet. Make sure not to plant them in wet soil otherwise the plants will die when the ground freezes during winter season. Choose a spot that is well- drained and gets good amount of sunlight as strawberries thrive well in sun. The plants can be grown in almost any soil that is rich in organic matter. You can alternatively use compost or manure to make it fertile. There should be enough spacing between the plants as they produce runners.
Maintenance and Care – Once the plants have grown and started flowering, it is advisable to remove the first flowers as this practice ensures a higher yielding crop for next season. It also helps in strengthening the roots and stems. Pinching off the excessive runners also helps in increasing fruit production. Mulching the plants helps in keeping the temperature of soil low and it also prevents weeds from growing near the plants. Fertilizing the strawberry plants regularly will ensure that they yield fruit to their maximum potential. However, make sure not to over- fertilize as the excess nitrogen can damage the fruit.