Are you a Strawberry lover & wanna grow Strawberry in your garden?? So, here we are giving you the A-Z details Guide To Growing Strawberries. It’s harder to find anyone who doesn’t love it.
Guide To Growing Strawberries
The first historical references to its cultivation are found in Ancient Rome. Where it was cultivated as ornamental plants or table fruits. The word strawberry derives from the name Freizer. A French engineer who brought the fruit from Chile to Europe. Currently, the University of California has a tradition of researching and genetically generating new varieties of strawberries or strawberries that dominate the market.
Being a hybrid plant, its reproduction by seed can be complicated. For this reason, it is recommended that its propagation be carried out through stolons and crowns; this method allows a fast and safe vegetative development. Although strawberries can live for a long time. It is recommended to only exploit them for the first two years of life since at older age their susceptibility to pests increases and their production decreases. Let’s see the Guide To Growing Strawberries.
Cultivation of Strawberries-
- These seedlings can be from their own cultivation or acquired in an establishment.
- You should choose specimens without plague or disease, without leaves, with or without roots.
- Sometimes the specimens that we buy or get do not have leaves or roots. This is to store them in a cold place (at -1ºC or 0ºC) until they are sold.
- If they came to you by parcel, we recommend that before opening the box. Or sack you place it in a cool place without drafts for 30 minutes before opening it to acclimatize. Open it little by little, with the help of gloves or with clean hands we will take the seedlings and make sure they are in good condition.
- Before sowing, try to immerse it in chlorinated water (5ml for each liter of water) for 5 minutes or in a bactericidal or fungal solution. To prevent disease.
- Although strawberries can live for a long time, it is recommended to only exploit them for the first two years of life, since at older age their susceptibility to pests increases, and their production decreases.
Soil or Substrate for Growing Strawberries-
The influence of the soil, its physical structure, and chemical content are one of the bases for the development of the strawberry. It prefers balanced soils, rich in organic matter or nutrients, aerated, well-drained. But with a certain capacity to retain water.
The chemical balance of the nutritive elements is considered more favorable than their high richness. It is important to use innocuous substrates or sterilized or previously treated soils to maintain low levels of pathogens that are essential for cultivation.
The optimal grain size of soil for strawberry cultivation is approximately:
– 50% sand
– 20% clay
– 15% limestone
– 5% Peat moss, coconut dust, or organic matter
In short, a soil classified as sandy or sandy-loam (Perlite, vermiculite, coconut fiber). And homogeneously deep (equal to or greater than 15 cm deep) would be close to the ideal for our cultivation.
The first thing we will do is disinfect the crown or stem. As well as all the materials to be used (seedbed, bags, pots, garden shovels, etc).
We can do direct or indirect sowing. If it is indirect we place the crowns in seedbeds of 21 cavities with perlite, tezontle, vermiculite, coconut fiber. Or any mixture that has good drainage and aeration, ensuring that the substrate is always moist.
If we do it in direct sowing, it can be in pots (5 “, 6”, or 7 “), grow bags (20×20 or 30×30), or coconut fiber bolis. These containers must have a good substrate (such as perlite, tezontle, vermiculite, coconut fiber, or some mixture that has good drainage and aeration,) ensuring that the substrate is always humid. We sow one crown per container.
The sowing depth will be 1cm below the substrate. Ensuring that the roots are always downwards. And if possible that the bud from which the leaves sprout is above the substrate.
Then we will place them in a place with partial shade. Ensuring that it receives the light of dawn and dusk but not that of noon or the most intense hours of sunlight. Avoid sudden changes in temperature. You can place them in a greenhouse or inside your house next to a window or a place with good lighting.
Its growth will depend on the light and temperature conditions. Its sprouting and establishment of roots can vary from 15 to 45 days.
They can be sown at any time of the year. But generally, it is done in the first months of the rainy season (May, June, and July); to obtain production in the first months of the dry season (November / December). In order to avoid diseases and poor production.
Long days (more than 12 hours of light) cause excessive vegetative growth. Low temperatures and short days induce flowering. The strawberry requires a pH of 5.5 to 6.5 and a depth in the substrate of 15 cm.
For its development to be adequate, we need good drainage. Therefore substrates such as coconut fiber, perlite, vermiculite, or tezontle are recommended. Being a perennial plant (it has green leaves all year round) and due to its growth system, it is constantly forming new stems. Strawberry propagation is achieved through stolons of “mother” plants. Which must be in perfect condition (without mechanical or plague damage), without flowers or flower buds.
We can spread it in different ways and in different systems.
Substratum For Growing Strawberries-
Direct seeding is recommended in the coco coir pens. For this, we must first perforate the pens by making a cross or cutting a circle every 20 cm. Thus achieving 5 perforations per pen.
Then we moisten the substrate and plant the stolons. Remember to previously disinfect your plant by submerging it for a few minutes in a solution with fungicide, bactericide, and insecticide. Or you can place it in a 30% chlorine solution for 5-15 minutes. When the stolons come into contact with the ground they will emit roots, thus creating new plants.
Recirculating System Guide for Growing Strawberries-
In the event that we want to produce strawberries in an NGS or NFT system, we will plant the stolons in seedbeds with coconut fiber.
Once they have rooted and have a diameter in their crown equal to or greater than 1cm and the roots are long enough (approximately 10-15 cm long). They are placed in each production system. Shortly after sowing or transplanting, when the plant still does not have vigor. The first flowers that emerge should be suppressed so that it becomes strong and grows properly. It can also emit stolons (usually in spring-summer) and will not bloom. So they should be suppressed.
Irrigation For Growing Strawberries-
Strawberry roots are superficially dispersed (15 – 30 cm) within the substrate. Which requires light, but frequent watering to keep the substrate moist. Especially in well-drained substrates, which are the most recommended for planting.
The irrigation will be only with water the first days after sowing. As soon as they begin to root we will place the nutrient solution little by little. You can start by placing a third of the recommended dose of the nutritive solution for vegetables.
A localized drip irrigation system is recommended, remember that you can automate your irrigation with a timer. Irrigation can also be manual. Generally, a plant requires approximately 450-600ml of solution per day (these data may vary).
Pruning Guide For Growing Strawberries-
It is a very important activity since it gives strength and vigor to your plants, improving flowering and development. You will have to eliminate the stolons generated by the plant since they consume essential nutrients for production. Pruning is done after strong production cycles, removing old bunches, dry and damaged leaves. And fruit remains that remain at the base of the clump, taking care not to mistreat the plant, it is generally not pruned before the first production.
This is done every time you check your crop (at least every week) and after you have carried out the transplant. You should only remove the diseased leaves (yellowish or brownish, necrosis / black coloration) and senescence (old leaves).
By eliminating this type of leaves, you stimulate your plants to have greater vegetative development, good ventilation. And we discard any possible infection by spores, bacteria, and viruses that could contaminate them. Pruning allows the passage of light to the leaves to be greater. Accelerating the renewal of the plant and facilitating the application of pesticides; what prevents the attack of fungi in the fruit.
Like the leaves, you will have to remove the sickest, oldest, or wilted flowers. Preventing the others from being damaged. It is recommended to remove the first flowers after sowing or transplanting to give the plant vigor.
The flowers arise from stems in the crown, or in the axils of the leaves. The branching of the inflorescence can be near the base or near the tip. In which each twig or stem generates another “flower” (inflorescence). In the first case, the flowers are similar in size and shape, while in the second there is a terminal or primary flower and other smaller secondary ones.
The first months are more productive and the fruit is of better quality due to its size and uniformity. The harvest usually lasts 5 to 6 months. Because it is highly perishable. It is harvested every three days and must be handled with great care. It has been seen that the plant has had a productive life of three years, with developed fertilization.
- First, the fruits are selected visually based on the size of the fruit, color, and aroma mainly.
- The fruits are left with the peduncle (stem) with a length of 5 to 6 mm and placed without touching them in plastic trays. Any inspection should be done only by taking the peduncle.
- A strawberry fruit harvested in full ripeness and kept at room temperature deteriorates by 80% in just 8 hours. So the boxes are immediately taken to a cold room. This will improve the shelf life and appearance of the fruit for the next 72 hours. Making it more durable and maintaining its characteristics of an appetizing fruit.
- If the crop is for export, it is recommended to harvest it, between 50 and 75% ripening, and put as quickly as possible in cold rooms (0-10 ºC). Transport should be refrigerated at 4ºC.
Nutrient Properties Of Strawberries-
Strawberries contain cellulose, citric, Matic, oxalic and salicylic acids. It is also rich in minerals such as iron, sodium, magnesium, calcium, zinc, iodine, among others. Its vitamin properties are notable for its content of carotene, vitamins B, C, and E.
Kilojoules (kJ)- 113
Vitamin B3- 540 mgr
Kilocalories (Kcal)- 27
Vitamin C- 55 mgr
Protein- 1 gr
Vitamin E- 0.23 mg
Fats- 0.6 gr
Calcium (Ca)- 21.5 mgr
Carbon H.- 5.5 gr
Phosphorus (P)- 26 µgr
Mineral fiber- 1.6 gr
Iron (Fe)- 0.45 mgr
Carotene- 3 µgr
Magnesium (Mg)- 13.3 mgr
Vitamin B1- 30 mgr
Zinc (Zn)- 0.22 mgr
Vitamin B2- 40 mgr
Iodine (I)- 0.5 mgr
Vitamin B6- 60 mgr
Potassium (K)- 156 mgr
It contains a large number of organic acids and vitamin C, mineral substances, and sugars. This is why it is highly appreciated for its flavor and its applications in medicine. The antioxidant power of the strawberry is incomparable to that of any other fruit. In relation to weight, it is the fruit that contains the highest amount of carotene, vitamin C, and vitamin E. Its consumption is recommended to prevent cancer.
Strawberry is considered an excellent production alternative with a wide market in fresh consumption, agribusiness, and confectionery. Due to the properties attributed to it being an excellent diuretic and of balance in the generation of estrogens among others, so It is considered a successful, alternative project for the producers of the Federal District. So here are the details Guide To Growing Strawberries. If you are interested in vegetable gardening, you may visit our vegetable gardening category! Have a good day.