Group Title: Extension vegetable crops mimeo report
Title: Strawberries in the home garden
Full Citation
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 Material Information
Title: Strawberries in the home garden
Series Title: Extension vegetable crops mimeo report - Florida Agricultural Extension Service ; 72-2
Physical Description: 6 p. : ill. ; 28 cm.
Language: English
Creator: Stephens, James M.
University of Florida -- Agricultural Extension Service
Publisher: Florida Agricultural Extension Service
Place of Publication: Gainesville, Fla.
Publication Date: 1972
Copyright Date: 1972
Subject: Strawberries -- Florida   ( lcsh )
Genre: government publication (state, provincial, terriorial, dependent)   ( marcgt )
non-fiction   ( marcgt )
General Note: Caption title.
General Note: "May, 1972."
Statement of Responsibility: by James M. Stephens.
 Record Information
Bibliographic ID: UF00094945
Volume ID: VID00001
Source Institution: University of Florida
Holding Location: University of Florida
Rights Management: All rights reserved by the source institution and holding location.
Resource Identifier: oclc - 433148366

Full Text
Extension Vegetable Crops
Mimeo Report 72-2


By: James M. Stephens
Assistant Vegetable Crops S;ecialist

May, 1972

A. Introduction

B. Plant Characteristics and
Climatic Response

C. Soil Requirements

D. Varieties

E. Planting Dates

F. Planting Distances

G. Bed Preparation and

H. Mulching

1. Setting Plants

J. Problems

K. Barrel Culture

A. Introduction

Strawberries are very popular in Florida home and market gardens. They
also provide a multi-million dollar crop for the state's commercial producers.
Strawberries may be grown in gardens throughout all areas of the state, with
the hill system being the method of culture most successful.

B. Plant Characteristics and Climatic Response

The strawberry plant is perennial by nature, but is grown as an annual
in Florida. The plant goes through a cycle of vegetative growth, flower
formation, fruit production, then runner development.





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-Strawberry plants produce runners, which take root and form '
,' ' . new plants. .

Mother plants are set in the garden in the fall (September-November);
the cool nights and short days of the winter stimulate the plant to produce
flowers; following the last killing frost of spring (December-January in
frost-free areas) flowers are Formed which develop into fruits ready for
harvest in about a month. Berry production and harvesting continue throughout
the spring; upon the onset of warr. weather and longer days, the plants cease
to produce berries and begin to form runners which take root and become new
plants. All plants are usually destroyed at this time; however, the new
runner plants could be removed from the mother plant and reset to produce
more runner plants themselves. Such vegetative growth would continue until
winter and the onset of the fruiting portion of the cycle.

The leaves will withstand cold weather, but flowers and fruit may be
injured or killed by frosts and freezes. By protecting early blossoms, you
might obtain early Fruit.

C. Soil Requirements

Well-drained, moist but not wet, sandy soils with a good quantity of
organic matter are best suited for strawberry production, but most all soil
types are acceptable. The organic peats and mucks are least desirable.

D. Varieties

Since strawberries are very sensitive to such climatic conditions as
day length and temperature, it is important that you select a variety adapted

to Florida conditions. All of the following have proven themselves here and
are suggested for gardens throughout the state.

Florida 90 This standard variety produces a large, vigorous plant
that yields heavily over a long period of time; fruits are large, red, pointed
berries of good eating quality.

Tioga This plant is very large and vigorous, with big, dark-green
glossy leaves; fruits are very large, firm, wedge-shaped berries of medium
quality. The plant is susceptible to leafspot.

Sequoia This newer variety produces a big, vigorous plant; the fruits
are large, wedge-shaped, of high quality, but somewhat soft when ripe.

for Florida.
as they bear

The "Everbearing" varieties of strawberries are not well suited
The above suggested varieties could be considered everbearingg,"
fruit early and continuously over a 3 -onth or more period of

E. Planting Dates

North Florida

Sept. 15-Nov. 15

Central Florida

Sept. 15-Nov. 15

South Florida

Oct. 1-Dec. I

F. Planting Distances

Plant Spacing Plants/100
Bed Type Bed Spacing In Rows Between Rows Ft. of Row

Single row bed 36"-40" 12" 100
Two row bed (most popular) 48"-60" 12" 12" 100
Four row bed 60"-84" 10" 12" 120

G. Bed Preparation and Fertilization

The two row bed, covered with black plastic mulch as shown below, is
most popular. Apply fertilizer as follows:

Step 1. Before making the beds, broadcast fertilizer over the plot
and spade or disk in. The amount to apply is shown in the table below.

Step 2. Then prepare the bed, applying more fertilizer in a single,
narrow band in the middle of the bed four to eight inches deep. Do not
apply fertilizer in bands directly under the plants, as salt burn may occur.

Diagram of Strawberry Bed
(From IFAS 142C)

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Fertilizer Amounts

Sands & Clays

Marl & Rockland

Lbs. 6-8-8/100 q. Ft.
Broadcast Band
2# 2#

Lbs. 4-8-8/100 Sq. Ft.

2 -#

2 #

Probably not needed,
except where not mulched.

Probably not needed,
except where not mulched.

Mucks & Peat

Strawberries not recommended.

(For more information, see Circular 104 "Vegetable Gardening Guide."

H. Mulching

Strawberries should be mulched for best results, although not absolutely
necessary. While straw and other natural organic materials may be used, black
polyethylene plastic mulch has proven best.

Use 1 to 1l mil plastic in aiwidth that will completely cover top and
sides of bed. Apply the plastic just before planting. Be sure the bed is
formed properly, is firm, is fertilized, and is very moist.

Place soil on the edges of the plastic to hold in place. Cut slits or
holes at the proper intervals in which to insert plants.


I. Setting Plants

When receiving your young plants from the nursery for setting, take
care to keep the roots from drying out and being damaged. Plants received
before you are quite ready to set may be kept well wrapped in a refrigerator;
or, you may "heel them in" individually into a V-shaped trench.

When setting plants in the garden row:

leave tops

Buy certified, disease-free plants.
Keep plants moist before planting.
Set plants in moist soil.
Spread roots out in fan-shape; do not double or crumple up.
Set them at the correct depth. Do not cover crown, and do not
roots exposed (see diagram).
Pack the soil around the roots firmly.

Strawberry Planting Depth


J. Pest Problems

Pests on strawberries in the garden include insects, diseases, nematodes,
weeds, birds, and animals.

Insects The most common insect pests affecting strawberries in the
garden are: pameras, flower thrips, spider mites, white grubs, cutworms, slugs
and snails. See Circular 104, "Vegetable Gardening Guide" for suggestions on
insect control.

Diseases Leafspots, stem spotting, plant blight, and fruit rots are
often encountered by gardeners. Spraying and dusting may be beneficial. See
Circular 104 for disease control.


Other Pests Circular 104 also discusses control of weeds and

Nets may be placed over garden rows to prevent birds from pecking the

K. Barrel Culture

Strawberries are often grown in containers such as barrels. In this
manner, they are both attractive and productive. For more information, ask
for Vegetable Crops Mimeo 64-4, "Growing Strawberries in Barrels."

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