Congratulations on the arrival of your new Farmer Daves strawberry plant! Just as all little living things want certain conditions, your strawberry plant does too. To ensure the happiest plant and most fruit:
- Snip off “runners”. These are the long trailing future daughter plants that might make the plant look bigger, but leaving them will take energy from the plant to make fruit.
- Water often with less than more water. On a dry windy day you may need to water two or three times. On a cool rainy day perhaps not at all. But a showery day may still need a watering. Go to pick up the pot to gauge how dry it is by its weight. With time you will get to know your plants water needs by how heavy it is. If the plant dries out too much it will cause the plant to have yellow/dead leaves and no fruit. The goal is to have the soil always be moist, never dry, and not constantly soggy.
- The more sun the better for the plant. But watch the temperatures. Ideally the strawberry plant would be in the 50’s at night and in full sun in the 70’s during the day. The closest we can get to those temperatures the better. A freezing night will ruin the fruit and blossoms- but more will eventually come out. Temperatures above 90 will also ruin fruit and kill blossoms. In the peak of summer it can be difficult to keep the plant fruiting. Some will put them in a “soon to be” sunny spot at dusk and move them to a shady spot later in the morning. The dark green pot is great for warming the roots in the spring. But the pot can also absord the heat of the sun in the summer and cook the roots. Some have covered the pot with aluminum foil in the summer to reflect the sun from the pot.
- Feed the plant with whatever fertilizer you us in your garden. The roots are isolated in the pot and cannot extend out in search of more nutrients so you will need to feed them every few weeks to keep them thriving.
- These are everbearing perennial strawberries that could produce fruit all summer long. And they can be overwintered for another year of fruiting. The trick for overwintering is to not allow the plants to get to frigid temperatures (below 22 degrees) and not allow the plant to constantly freeze and thaw in the winter. The best way to overwinter the strawberry is under a bed of straw. Hence the name! Enjoy!
This is a wonderful article on overwintering and care including how to plant the runners for more strawberry babies!