How To Grow Delicious Organic Strawberries
Gardening can scare some people away because you cannot rely on traditional methods used in the home garden such as ready to use fertilizers and herbicides. However organic gardening can be easier and more economical for these reasons, you don't have to spend time applying chemicals every couple of weeks or worrying about how to apply them. Growing organic strawberries is not only very simple but produces the absolute most delicious strawberries you can find anywhere.
Starting Your Organic Strawberry Garden
As a basis for your new strawberry garden you will want three things, a well-draining soil base, a nutrient rich organic additive like compost or natural manures and finally a raised bed to put your new soil materials into. If you don't compost, don't worry almost all nurseries carry generic compost and often high quality natural fertilizers such as bat guano.
You should begin by constructing your raised bed so that you have an idea of how much soil you will need, for strawberries I would suggest an 8 inch high bed with an adequate length and width to plant at least 25 strawberry plants.
The reason you want at least 25 strawberries is because you should assume each plant will only make around 3 - 4 berries during the growing season. While they may make more, you will likely lose some berries to pests and there is nothing more disappointing than working hard on a strawberry garden that produces only a few berries.
Preparing Your Soil and Planting
Now you want to fill in your bed, you can use soil from your yard but if it does not drain well you should add perlite or a drainage additive into it before putting it in your bed. You will also want to put a layer of compost starting about 2 inches below the soil surface and be sure to make it a generous layer as it will feed your plants throughout the whole season.
After you finish filling in your raised bed it's time to plant your strawberries, you can either use a flat of berries that you buy or plant seeds according to their package's instructions. If you plant mature plants you should consider applying a layer of mulch to help keep a higher soil temperature and increase water retention; if you planted seeds you should wait till your plants develop some to apply this layer of mulch.
brought to you by Lucas, who loves gardening and writing about the cultivation of plants; read more at Plantdex.
Image source - Wikimedia