Strawberries in a Strawberry Pot

Sunday, June 27, 2010

Have you ever wanted to know how to grow strawberries in strawberry pots? It is actually very easy and a lot of fun....a great project to do with kids. There are many reasons why you may want to plant a strawberry pot. One of the obvious reasons is if you live in a condo or an apartment and you have no garden area. You can place these beautiful pots right on your deck and enjoy the freshly picked strawberries as they become ripe. That said, even people who have gardens, like myself, often choose to grow strawberries in strawberry pots. For me, I like the look of a lush strawberry pot but for others, using a pot makes controlling the runners easier than in a bed.

Getting Started:
First you need to make a trip to your local nursery or gardening center. You should be able to find all you need to get started there.

Your local nursery will carry more than a few varieties of strawberries that grow well in your area or for convenience you can order them online.You will have a choice between June bearing, everbearing or day neutral. An everbearing variety will produce strawberries throughout the summer, usually two or three crops. Day neutral varieties also produce strawberries throughout the growing season. June bearing varieties produce one large crop in late spring/early summer depending on where you live and then they will be done producing until the next year. June bearing plants are known to produce larger berries.

What You’ll Need:
Strawberry pot
Potting soil
Strawberry plants
PVC Pipe with holes drilled into it or a heavy-duty cardboard tube (left over from your gift wrapping paper or from foil or plastic wrap)
Pea or Small gravel

What To Do:
Place potting soil into the pot up to the lowest holes on the sides of the pot.
Remove a strawberry plant from its plastic container.
Break up the soil around the roots of the plant and fan them out a little. Place the plant into the pocket, add some more potting soil and pack it firmly around the roots. Plant the strawberry plant so that the crown is just barely above the soil surface. Plant strawberry plants in all of the lower pockets. Dig a small hole in the center of the dirt. Place PVC pipe or cardboard tube so that it is standing straight up the middle of the pot. Pack some dirt around it but you will probably have to hold it with one hand or have someone hold it for you until you get enough dirt around it for it to stand up by itself. Fill the pipe or tube with gravel. Add more potting soil up to the next pockets and plant strawberries in the same way as above. Keep repeating until you have filled the pot up with soil. Plant three or four strawberry plants in the top of the pot. If you used a cardboard tube, gently remove the tube leaving the gravel in place. If you used PVC pipe, just leave it in there. After planting, gently water the top of the pot and each opening. For the rest of the season you should be able to water just from the top as the gravel will help to spread the water throughout the dirt and take it down deep enough to the bottom plants. Keep an eye out though. If it looks like the plants in the holes are not getting enough water then you will have to gently water them through each opening. Placing some sphagnum moss around each plant will help to hold the dirt in if it is being watered out.

Place the strawberry pot in a sunny location (at least six hours of sun a day) and rotate it every few days so that each plant gets enough sunlight. Continue to water the plants every day. Containers tend to dry out much faster than a garden bed. If you planted everbearing or day neutral it is a good idea for the first few weeks to pinch off the blossoms when they flower. This gives the plant a chance to put its energy into establishing the roots and the plant itself before having to produce fruit.

Enjoy your beautiful pot and lots and lots wonderful strawberries!

I also love to grow herbs in strawberry pots. I'll save that for another post!