You can grow strawberries easily in containers and even hanging baskets as well as in the ground. But in containers you have the power to add the right soil to suit these succulent soft fruits.
Strawberries taste delicious when they have been picked straight from the plant after having been sun-ripened and popped straight into your mouth.
1 x trowel
1 x watering can
When to start
Any time from autumn to May - As soon as you receive your plants get all your equipment ready. You’ll notice your strawberry plants arrive to you with lots of roots and a stubby stem. Though this may look unpromising, once the roots come in contact with the soil in your trough, they will establish and encourage quick- growing, healthy green growth in the spring to produce flowers that turn into the delicious fruit.
What to do
Fill the trough or planter with Vegetable Growing Compost so that there is a 3cm (1 ½ in) gap from the top of the trough. Create a level surface, smoothing compost down with the back of the trowel.
Place the many-rooted strawberry plants at stations 20-25cm (8-10in) apart. In a 1m long trough that about three plants, in a 30cm (12in) container, that’s about 1-2 plants.
Dig small holes in the Vegetable Growing Compost with the trowel so that you can spread out the roots of the strawberry plants. Back-fill the holes and firm plants in with your hands- the roots should be buried and the short stubby green stem proud of the soil.
If you are planting your strawberries in winter or when the weather is cold, water only once a day to keep the compost moist without being waterlogged. If it’s warm outside water twice a day, once in the morning and once in the evening to keep the soil moist.
Once the stems produce flowers and you notice the centre of the flower is swelling into a fruit (the petals should be wilting at this point) it’s a good idea to feed your strawberry plants to give them the nutrients they need to produce superior fruit.
Simply insert Easy-Feed sticks on both sides of a single strawberry plant. Insert 12cm (5in) away from the main stem and 2cm (1in) below the surface.
When harvesting your fruits place them gently into a container or baskets to avoid bruising.
In Year 1 you should get about a punnet’s worth of strawberries from one plant. In Year 2 and 3 this will increase to about double the quantity.