Strawberries are one of the more popular small fruit crops. Proper planting of strawberries allows them to get established quickly and be prolific. This article will detail how to plant strawberry plants properly.
Strawberries like a location that has full sun and is well drained. Till the soil and work in organic matter if desired before planting. Strawberries can be purchased from garden centers, received from friends or neighbors, or obtained from existing plants. Make sure that the ground is ready before digging up strawberries, if possible. Strawberries in pots can be allowed to stay in pots for a few days, provided that they are given sufficient water.
Spring is the best time to plant strawberries. Strawberry plants planted in spring have the entire season to establish themselves, set fruiting buds, and produce runners. If strawberries cannot be planted by June, it is better to wait until late summer to plant them. Plants planted in fall will not set runners, and may set fewer fruiting buds as they are busy re-establishing themselves.
Strawberries in pots should be planted into the soil as is; loosen any root buildup that is occurring to allow plants to establish themselves faster. Remove extra root build-up if pots are pot-bound. Plants that have been dug up are more susceptible to transplant shock. Remove old leaves and runners, making sure there are sufficient leaves remaining. Ideally, strawberry plants will be moved while they are still dormant. If plants have to be out of the soil for over an hour, cover roots with soil rather than putting them in water.
When planting strawberries that have been dug up, make sure that the roots spread out. Do not push all the roots into a clump and pile soil around them; filter soil among the roots. Gently pack the soil around the plants to eliminate air, but do not stamp or pack it too hard. You want to plant the strawberry plant at its proper depth; you do not want to bury the crown, but the roots need to be underneath the soil level. After planting, water the strawberry plants thoroughly, and water when the patch starts to dry out, daily in hot conditions but not necessary on overcast days unless the soil is dry.
By following these simple procedures with timing and method in planting strawberries, the plants will get a head start and be at maximum productivity with minimal loss.