Thinning Out Strawberries: When And How To Renew A Strawberry Patch
The first thing to do when you have a strawberry patch is to make sure it’s not overrun with pests or disease. You want to get rid of all the weeds and keep your strawberries safe from harm.
If you don’t do anything, they will eventually die off and then what?
They won’t produce any fruit at all!
You need to decide if you’re going to fertilize your strawberry patches or not. Fertilizing will give your strawberries a little extra boost and help them grow bigger, but it isn’t necessary. You’ll still get the same amount of fruit from just having regular care of your plants. (And no, fertilizer doesn’t make strawberries taste better!)
So which method are you going to use?
Fertilizer Methods For Strawberries
There are two types of fertilizer methods for strawberries. One is organic and one is chemical. Organic fertilizers are made using natural ingredients like composted manure, animal waste, and even plant matter such as wood chips. Chemical fertilizers aren’t necessarily bad; however, some chemicals may be harmful to humans or animals so it’s best to avoid them altogether if possible.
Manure is an organic fertilizer that’s easy to find, although it smells pretty bad and you have to wait a while before using the soil where you spread it. Animal manure has more nitrogen, plant matter has more potassium and other minerals. You have to find the right mixture for your soil. You can also use commercially prepared organic fertilizers like bloodmeal and soybean meal.
Chemical fertilizers are quick and easy. They contain all the nutrients that your plants need to grow quickly. The most common chemical fertilizer is probably 10-10-10 which contains: 10% nitrogen, 10% phosphorus, and 10% potassium. The numbers aren’t the % of the ingredients, but the amount of each element contained in the bag!
Now that you have your fertilizer, it’s time to water your strawberry plants. Water is just as important for a plant’s survival as nutrients. Most people only water their plants when they see that the soil is dry. However, it’s not good to wait that long.
By then, the ground can have cracks in it and the plant’s roots can start to die. A better way is to give your plants a good soak twice a week, whether the soil is dry or not.
Sources & references used in this article:
Missouri strawberries by TJ Talbert – 1926 – mospace.umsystem.edu
Strawberries in Nebraska by CC Wiggans – 1920 – digitalcommons.unl.edu
Grow the Best Strawberries: Storey’s Country Wisdom Bulletin A-190 by L Riotte – 1998 – books.google.com
Strawberry growing in Colorado by GA Beach – … (Colorado Agricultural Experiment Station); no. 86, 1935 – mountainscholar.org
Fruit yield components of strawberries grown in solid beds by TJ Talbert – 1924 – University of Missouri, Agricultural …
Strawberry production in Ohio by HM Anderson, CG Guttrridge – Journal of Horticultural Science, 1976 – Taylor & Francis
Strawberry diseases by CL Vincent, LL Claypool – 1932 – Pullman, Washington: State College …