How to Grow Strawberries in Pots? Growing strawberries in pots are simple and enjoyable. When cultivated in containers, any type of strawberry can produce fruit. There are distinctions between June-bearing strawberries and everbearing strawberries. Strawberries bearing in June will produce a single primary crop over a two-week period in early summer. Furthermore, both day-neutral everbearing strawberries have a longer growing season than June-bearing types.
Day-neutral plants will irregularly yield berries throughout the summer, and everbearing strawberries will provide two to three harvests every season. Everbearing strawberries, on the other hand, yield smaller fruit and fewer runners than other types. Whatever you choose, make sure you obtain the correct container size because each has varying container size requirements. Follow these methods for growing and caring for potted strawberry plants to maximise your chances of a great harvest.
How to Grow Strawberries in Pots?
1. Prepare the Plants
Strawberries can be started from bare-root crowns or transplants. Transplants will seem lush and attractive in containers right once, but dormant bare-root crowns will need time to develop and generate leaves. Strawberry plants dislike being crowded, so plant no more than three strawberry plants per square foot of soil (for a 12-inch by 12-inch pot, for example). Because its roots are shallow, measure the surface area of the container to determine how much space it will have (assuming the container does not narrow sharply).
2. Add Soil
Fill the container halfway with the soil. A loose, loamy potting mix that will contain moisture but quickly drain away any excess water is ideal for strawberries in pots. Use a container that has a drainage hole in the bottom.
3. Plant the Strawberries
Plant the strawberries with their crowns (where the stem joins the roots) just above the soil level. Make a small mound of potting soil and spread the roots out over it. Then, cover the roots up to the crown with potting mix and thoroughly hydrate the soil. After the soil settles from watering, add extra potting mix as needed, but do not cover the crown with the soil.
4. Place the Container
Set the pot in a spot that receives at least eight to twelve hours of direct sunlight per day to ensure a plentiful supply of blooms and fruits. If the light is only coming from one direction, rotate the container every three to four days to ensure that the plants grow equally. Also, make certain that the plants are well-protected. Pests can still reach the strawberries because they are in pots. Insects, birds, and rodents will continue to be drawn to your plants, so protect them with netting or fencing.
5. Water the Plants
Water your strawberries when the soil feels dry 1 inch below the surface or about twice a week. You don’t want the plants to be sitting in water or soil that is too wet. To give the optimal environment for fruits to form, keep the soil slightly damp but not wet. The soil in containers tends to dry out faster than soil on the ground. As a result, prolonged hot, dry weather may demand twice-daily watering.
6. Feed Your Strawberries – to Grow Strawberries in Pots
Supplemental feeding is beneficial to the majority of container plants. Feed your strawberries with a balanced liquid fertiliser every three to four weeks. In the fall, apply a balanced fertiliser when the plants begin to create perennating buds within the crown that will become next year’s flowers and fruit.
7. Provide Winter Protection
Strawberries produce best when allowed to slumber in the winter. However, in colder places, the roots may freeze, and some containers may shatter if left out in frigid conditions. For winter protection, store your containers in an unheated garage or under a deck. Only water when the soil becomes extremely dry. You might also be able to mulch around the container and leave it in place.
Reasons to Grow Strawberries in Containers
- Space: Strawberries are compact plants, so even those with limited room can usually manage a few pots.
- Beauty: Strawberry cultivars that produce blossoms that resemble small wild roses are both aesthetically beautiful and delicious.
- Convenience: Strawberry pots can be placed near your kitchen or outdoor patio area for easy plucking.
- Pest, disease, and chemical control: Growing strawberry plants off the ground can assist to reduce pests and bacterial and fungal infections. It’s also easier to keep undesirable lawn and garden chemicals like insecticides and herbicides away from your plants.
Types of Containers for Growing Strawberries
The best container for growing strawberries is one with good drainage, whether it is a dedicated strawberry pot, a hanging basket, or a planter. Several drainage holes at the bottom of the container or multiple holes distributed throughout the container would suffice.
Strawberries have a small root ball, so they don’t require a large planter. They may grow in containers as small as 10 to 12 inches across and 8 inches deep. The smaller the container, though, the more frequently you will need to water it. If you want to produce June-bearing strawberries, you should do so in a wood-framed raised bed rather than a container.
Furthermore, synthetic and light-coloured pots will keep the roots cooler than dark colours and natural heat-conducting materials like clay and metal. Strawberry plants dislike extremely hot temperatures, therefore if you live in a hot region, choose light-coloured containers.
When to Replace Strawberries in Pots
Strawberries, even with the finest care, are a short-lived perennial. Your plants will most likely need to be replaced every three years as their productivity declines and they begin to die. You can, however, clip the runners and space them out in the container to make free strawberry plants.
Also Read: How to Grow Apple Trees in Pots?