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Brown leaves with bare, brittle stems in between - most strawberry beds look pretty desolate in spring. It is hard to imagine that these meager green plants should bear fruit again in between. But they will if you give them a spring regimen in time and avoid making a mistake.
Strawberries care spring
So that the new green has room to grow, leaves and withered leaves must first be removed. What should be done with the foothills depends on which variety (s) of strawberry (s) you have in the garden. You shouldn't make a mistake here: With the single-bearing varieties all runners are removed, as they cost the plant strength and thus reduce the harvest yield.
Everbearing strawberries bloom and fruit over a longer period of time - do not remove the tendrils here.
Different with everbearing varietiesthat bloom and bear fruit all summer through to autumn - in stores as monthly strawberries or wild strawberries: Here you should let the tendrils grow in order to get offspring for the years to come, and give the plants some berry fertilizer before they bloom. Although these varieties usually produce somewhat smaller fruits, they do a wonderful job as ground cover against proliferating weeds.
After "thinning out" the soil should be chopped through with a little distance to the plants. Be careful, strawberries are shallow-rooted and quickly lose their hold. Then water thoroughly - always around the plant, never in the heart.
Strawberries love humus-rich soil; An organic fertilizer especially for soft fruit is recommended for fertilization. The rule of thumb is: fertilize in the summer after the harvest, then the plant will still develop strong roots and blossoms until autumn. As already mentioned, everbearing varieties also receive a small amount of fertilizer in spring. In any case, you should make sure that the soil is moist enough so that the fertilizer can be absorbed.
How often should you water strawberries?
Never pour strawberries into the "heart" - only in a ring around the plant.
Strawberries belong to the garden folk who tend to be thirsty: If the drought persists, you should water the plants thoroughly up to twice a day (preferably in the morning and evening) - this is particularly important in the period between flowering and harvest.
If possible, do not aim the water jet in the heart of the plant, but rather water it in a ring around it.
Strawberries love loose soil - but be careful not to damage the shallow roots of the plants when you hoe them.
The classic strawberry plants are available in plastic bags or - a little more expensive - as a potted plant with a properly developed root ball. They are planted in summer, from around July, August through September. The so-called frigo plants, which were actually "developed" for professional cultivation, are even more expensive, but can also be planted in spring: they are kept in hibernation by cooling and can be planted in the bed as early as April if the weather and care are appropriate. So if you missed the summer date, you can make up for it in spring - but the harvest will be smaller and smaller compared to the plants planted in summer. When planting in spring you should also think of a fleece cover if late frosts threaten.
Until after the so-called ice saints, cold spells can always occur, so remember to protect freshly planted plants in the garden and on the balcony: When are the ice saints in 2021?
Before planting, put the root ball in a water bath so that it is well moistened. The soil should be loose, weed-free and provided with a layer of humus. As a rule of thumb, plan around 60 centimeters for the row spacing and 30 centimeters for the plant spacing - you will usually receive precise information on the individual varieties when you buy the plants.
The "heart" of the strawberry must not be covered with soil when planting.
The planting hole should be deep enough for the root ball to fit in without being crushed. Place the plant so that the heart is roughly level with the surface of the earth. However, it must not be covered with earth. Then press the plant down and water it properly so that the roots have good soil contact. The soil around the strawberry shouldn't dry out for the next week or two. As soon as the first new leaves appear, you can fertilize for the first time.
Why cover strawberries with straw?
Good protection against rot: straw as a base
When the fruits form, you should cover the ground underneath with straw or wood wool: This way the fruits do not come into contact with the ground, dry off more quickly after a downpour and are thus more likely to be spared from so-called fruit rot.
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