Monday, August 26

Time for some TLC

Three of our strawberry varieties have now finished fruiting and if I want to improve our chances of a good harvest next year it is time to give the plants some attention.

The old leaves have been cut off taking care not to cut the new leaves that are emerging from the crown. Normally there would also be a tangle of runners to cut away or pot up but this year the plants don't seem to have produced as many runners as normal.
Any weeds growing in the areas not covered by the weed control fabric have been removed and the soil just loosened a little.

The plants have been fed and watered. I avoid watering if I can when the plants are fruiting as this can spoil the flavour and lead to the water bags that are sold in the supermarkets.

Flamenco the perpetual fruiting strawberry will be left alone for now, (I may just trim some of the really shabby leaves off), as it is still providing us with a few fruits. 
Perpetual varieties produce fruits over an extended period and don't usually provide the bounty that the other plants do.

20 comments:

  1. I've got lots of runners, but no space to put them in! What is the lifetime of a Strawberry plant, Sue? I mean, before it stops fruiting well. Should I replace my plants every year with new ones from the runners?

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    1. David beat me to it Mark. As he says advice is to replace every three years. Must admit I tend to wait until the fruiting seems to be tailing off.

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    2. Forgot to add we have had hardly any runners this year - last year we had a tangled mess of them. This year just one or two weaklings.

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  2. They reckon strawberry plants being replaced every three years Mark

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    1. Are you disiplined enough to do that David?

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    2. No Sue to be honest sometimes I can`t remember what day it is let alone how long my plants have been in I do as you do and wait until fruiting tails off

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    3. I have the what day is it problem too, David!

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  3. I might get some of those flamenco plants Sue- our strawberries finished over a month ago.....

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    1. Flamenco doesn't produce lots of berries at once, Jill just a steady trickle so I guess just one or two plants will disappoint. WE treat ours just as a bonus.

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  4. Nice to see your plants are still producing fruit. I replaced my 3 year old plants last year with plants from runners, so my fruiting season was shorter than usual, affected by dry ground as well. I'm about half way through tidying up my Strawberry bed with about 100 runners re-potted.

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    1. Ours will be three years old next year, Rooko when we will have to make the decision whether to dig up or not!

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  5. I'm going to be taking all of my inherited strawberries out at the allotment as there was hardly a berry to be had this year. I did give them one year to see if they would do anything, but now they have to go. I am going to be putting in a new bed. Are there any particular varieties you would recommend Sue? I haven't got on well with everbearers in the past. I'm thinking Cambridge Favourite and Honeoye, as I have some at home with runners on. But I'd like to maybe try a third variety as well.

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    1. Our best croppers are Marshmello and Amelia, CJ. Marshmello performed better last year and Amelia this. Marshmello is earlier than Amelia. AS for everbearers - if space is at a premium I wouldn't have them as you are never going to get a large crop just an extended period when you have a few berries.

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  6. I wish my plants hadn't put out runners. I don't want new plants this year, yet I've got the task of sorting them all out again and cutting them off. They're great for increasing stock though, I'll probably be taking new plants next year.

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    1. At least I'm not being tempted to pot any on, Jo which is how I ended up with an overspill bed. That said I still have to tackle the overspill bed - I wonder if those plants have put out runners.

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  7. I ONLY HAD TWO STRAWBERRYS FROM ALL MY STRAWBERRYS THIS YEAR FOR SOME REASON Sue

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    1. What type are they Linda and how old? Maybe they need replacing.

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  8. What delicious looking strawberries. Mine don't seem to have many runners either. xxxx

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    1. Strange isn't it, Snowbird we had a thicket of runners last year.

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  9. Thanks for the advice, Sue (and David!)

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