The fruit of strawberry is famous worldwide and is a hybrid species of the genus Fragaria. We grow the strawberry plant for its fruit. You may be fond of this fruit for its many attributes. It has a bright red color and has a fantastic fragrance. The fruit is juicy and sweet in taste. Not only is it right in taste, but it also has many nutrients loaded in it like vitamin C, antioxidants, etc.
Together with being loaded with nutrients, it is useful in making ice creams, jams, chocolates, milkshakes, juice, etc., and can be consumed raw as a salad as well. Growing strawberries is super fun, and it is also effortless to grow. When you are growing strawberries in square foot garden way, it gets even better as you get more yield in less space and get a super-organized strawberry patch that will be easy to take care of and harvest.
Benefits of Strawberries
Not only do strawberries look good in bright red colors and taste juice and sweet, but they are also loaded with good nutritional value. You can consume strawberries in many ways like you can have them in milkshakes, ice creams, jams, cakes, jellies, puddings, and can even be eaten raw and so many other things that are fun to make and amazing to savor. So let us see some of the benefits of growing strawberries –
- They have vitamin contents like vitamin C that are good for immunity, and vitamin B9, which is good for the normal functioning of the cells and tissue growth together with being fundamental for pregnant women.
- They contain many minerals and are a good source of potassium and manganese, essential components for our body’s vital processes.
- They provide good cholesterol (HDL) to the body and hence are suitable for the heart. Since we all know that heart diseases are the most common issues to humans globally, it is a good source for maintaining our heart health as well. They improve vascular functions.
- They lower the blood pressure levels.
- They are even considered acceptable to be eaten by people having diabetes as they do not give very high blood sugar levels.
- They help us fight against cancer and even guard our bodies against it.
- They provide our body with fiber content that is both soluble and insoluble. This helps maintain the digestive system’s health as dietary fibers are good feeders for the healthy bacterias in our gut and thereby promote our stomach health.
- They also help in reducing inflammation.
- They have high levels of antioxidants in them, like polyphenols. Being an antioxidant provides good aid in improving our immunity system and the health of our skin.
- They are suitable for having in your weight loss diet as well as they are sodium-free, fat-free and low-calorie fruit. The carb content in them is very low, making it an excellent way to have a good taste while on a diet together with aiding in weight loss.
Hence strawberries are delicious and healthy fruits that have many benefits for us and also taste amazing.
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Some varieties of strawberry to grow from
There are many varieties of strawberries, and you should choose the one that suits you the best. You should decide on the best kind depending upon the area or location you are situated in and the America you live in. here are some of the varieties to choose from according to your choice of preference-
- June-bearing – these kinds of strawberries bear the strawberries-only during the month of June. However, the strawberry fruits are the largest in this variety, together with sending out many runners. They are day-length sensitive plants. They produce buds in the autumn season and bear fruits and flowers in June. Depending on how warm the climate is in your zone in America, they may be harvested from early June to late June.
- Everbearing – these kinds of strawberries are the ones that bear fruits two times in a year in two seasons. These plants produce good crops in the spring season, and then later during the year, they also bear light produce in summers. They start to bear another crop during the fall by delivering buds in summers when there are long days and even during autumn when the days become short. The buds formed in summer give fruits and flowers in autumn, while the buds formed in autumn bear fruits in the spring season the next year.
- Day-neutral – the specialty of this variety is that it doesn’t get affected by the length of the day; however, the other two get involved. They produce strawberries continuously till the first frost. However, the product will be lesser than the June bearing plants.
Square foot gardening strawberry
Growing strawberries is easy and easy to care for, especially when you are doing it in a square foot garden technique. By square foot gardening for strawberries, I mean that you grow strawberries in raised beds of 4 by 4 feet or four by 8 feet. These beds are then divided into grids of one square foot using some separation that can act as a small fence.
You can also use wooden frames of square foot alternatively, and it works the same. Then you use each grid to grow single kinds of plants with proper spacing and rowing. You can use one grid to grow strawberries or even multiple grids to grow them depending upon your need.
Square foot gardening strawberries ensure that you get good produce in a small space with efficiency and effectiveness.
So let us see now how to grow strawberries in square foot garden–
Growing strawberries is very easy, even if you are a beginner. You can also do it as a fun activity with your kids. They can be produced when the frost has melted, and the ground gets cleared to be able to work with.
However, different varieties of strawberry plants grow differently in different zones of America, depending on the climatic conditions. So it may differ, and you should go with the best time to grow depending on the particular variety that is best suited for them.
The strawberry plant loves to grow in the sun. Therefore it requires good sunlight of around 8 hours every day. You can set up your square foot garden bed or your wooden frame in a place that gets a fair amount of sunlight during the day.
However, the plant can be grown in partial sunlight, but such plants will bear lesser fruits and not grow to their full potential as they grow in full sunlight conditions. So if it is possible, you should place the plants in a place with good sunlight for best growth, but if you don’t get a sunny place, a partially shady place is fine for its slightly lesser growth.
The best part about square foot gardening is that to work well; we need a very rich quality of potting mix that enhances the plants’ growth. To make a potting mix for square foot gardening strawberries, you can use the organic compost, peat moss, and vermiculture in equal parts, mix them together and use it as your potting mix.
You can also use the garden soil and amend it by adding good amounts of organic compost to make it rich to support square foot gardening. Try to make the potting mix in such a texture that it is well grained to avoid the roots from rotting and dying.
Planting and spacing
For planting strawberry plants, you can use directly from seeds or use runners from already grown plants or even use transplants. You can purchase either of the seeds, runners, and transplants of whatever variety you desire to plant from local markets or even online.
If you don’t want to buy, then runners of existing strawberry plants can also be taken from friends or neighbors, and it can work fine. However, it is recommended to buy good quality seeds, runners of transplants for a great crop. Then make holes in the ground about an inch or so and sow the seeds, the seedlings, or the runners in it and cover it with the potting mix and add some water to provide moisture.
In square foot gardening, you can grow one plant per square or up to four plants per square. According to this spacing method, you can decide how many plants you want to grow as per your needs and how many square feet will be required for strawberry plantations. Some gardeners also use a full four by 4 square foot garden for growing strawberries itself if the quantity increases.
You can water the strawberry plants in a way that they get 1 to 2 inches of water per week. If the area you are in gets rain during the week, that is enough to the quantity of water as mentioned then it is sufficient and you don’t have to add more water that week.
But if it doesn’t rain, you should meet the plant’s water requirements by providing water yourself. Water especially gets essential components during the fruit blooming season.
Although the potting soil used in square foot gardening strawberries is rich in quality initially, it is still absolutely necessary to take care of the plants’ health by keeping them with good quality fertilizers. You can make organic compost tea by taking some hot water, taking some compost in a cloth, and dip it in the water for some time till the nutrients get absorbed in the water.
When this water cools down you can add them to the plant to nourish them. Or you can also add some more compost to it or blood meal or bone meal as well, anything that will give the plant the nutrient boost that it requires.
Pruning and Trimming
While growing the plants tend to produce many runners. It is advised to trim these runners as it will save plants’ energy in growing more produce and giving higher yields rather than providing for the runners. It will increase the plant yield every year.
Also, keep a check on the weeds that might grow and destroy the plants so keep pulling out the weeds as and when you find them. Use good quality organic pesticides also to save your plants against unwanted pests.
The harvesting time and harvesting season will depend upon the variety of strawberry plants you have decided to grow according as mentioned above. Some varieties get ready to be harvested during the month of June being early min or late June depending on the warmth of the zone of America you live in.
Such varieties are called June-bearing plants but bear good produce and you can pick these strawberries directly from the plants when they get bright red colored, big enough, and juicy enough to pick them up.
Other varieties may bear fruits ready to be harvested twice during the year as well, especially during the summer season, autumn, or even spring season depending on the type you are growing.
What should you not plant near strawberries?
What should you not plant near strawberries? While growing strawberries, we should keep in mind not to grow certain vegetables and plants near the strawberry patch that may hamper our strawberry patch’s growth and themselves get hindered in their development. Some of such plants that should not be grown around strawberry patches are-
Growing such kinds of plants should be avoided near strawberry patches since they might cause avoidance in the proper growth of our strawberry plants by causing some deadly disease for the plants.
We should also make sure that the beds in which we are growing our strawberry plants, like in a square foot garden, should not have been used to grow these plants in the past and avoid contact and effect of any kind.
What is a good companion plant for strawberries?
What is a good companion plant for strawberries? Some plants are good to be grown as companions around our main plant as they add benefits to the main plant’s growth and benefit from them in some ways. It is always advised to choose good companions to be grown around the main plant so that instead of benefiting each other mutually they in fact don’t create problems for each other’s growth.
Some of the plants that are good to be grown as companions for strawberry plants are vegetable plants like
These kinds of plants add to the growth of our strawberry plants and also get benefited from the growing conditions of strawberries and therefore thrive together.
How many strawberries do you need for a square foot garden?
How many strawberries do you need for a square foot garden? When growing plants in a square foot gardening way, we make raised beds of around four by 4 feet or 4 by 8 feet divided into one square foot space. These square foot spaces are used to grow a single type of plant. We can use as many square foot spaces to grow as many plants as we need.
In one square foot space, you can grow 4 to 6 strawberry plants. Some gardeners prefer to grow only one plant per square foot.
However, other gardeners chose to grow four plants per square, and it works well as well. But you can keep trimming the runners from time to time to help in better growth and yield as the plant’s excess energy to maintain the runners will be saved and be used for achieving more generous yields. But don’t grow more than six plants in a square foot area.
How many strawberries will one plant yield?
The yield that the strawberry plants will give will depend on many factors. Like whether the variety of plants you have grown is inherently the type that will provide good yields or the one that will initially don’t give much produce to start with. It depends on your zone’s climatic conditions in America and whether and how much is well suited for the plant to grow well.
It will also depend on whether plants’ basic needs are being met nicely like sunlight, water, soil richness, fertilizers, pest control, and other factors. However, if everything goes well, on average, a strawberry plant produces 150 to 400 grams of strawberries varying from size to size.
How many strawberry plants do I need for a family of 4?
You can grow the number of plants depending upon the needs of the person. However, you can grow 6 to 7 plants for each person. And if you want to store the strawberries, then you can produce at least ten plants per person. You can grow 30 to 35 plants, and that should be sufficient for a family of 5 people. However, if you want to store them and freeze them, you could grow 50 plants.
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Strawberries are fruits that are delicious to eat and fun to grow. They not only taste good and sweet but are also very good at nutritional value and provide us our body health in many ways. For example, they have vitamin C and antioxidants that improve our body’s immunity and are rich in fiber and aids in weight loss by being low in carbs. They also help maintain heart health, reduce blood pressure and blood sugar levels, etc. With being so good in nutrients, they can be used to make jams, jellies, milkshakes, cakes, and many different kinds of desserts and can also be eaten raw.
Square foot gardening strawberries is a great way to grow strawberries in your own garden. It is effortless to grow strawberries and also fun that can be done with kids as well. While growing strawberries, you should take care of the potting mix, which should be rich when growing them in a square foot garden way. Make sure about the different strawberries’ temperature requirements that you can choose from depending upon your location, climatic conditions, yields, choice, and preferences.
Strawberry plants can be grown from seeds, runners, and even seedlings or transplants but make sure whatever you choose is of good quality. By taking care of the plant’s sunlight requirements, the water requirements, the fertilizers, pruning, training, pest control, weeding, etc., you can make sure that your strawberry plants give you a great yield consumption as well as for freezing and storing.
I am Elsa, love gardening. I spent lots of time with plants, flowers, it gives me lots of happiness.
I am sharing all the practical tips on how to grow various plants, flower plants, vegetables in the garden. Read more about me.