Welcome to Strawberry Plants .org!

welcome to strawberry plants .orgWelcome to the last source you will ever need for information about strawberry plants!  You have likely eaten your fair share of those delightful red berries, and we hope to encourage you to learn as much as you can about the flavorful fruits and the strawberry plants that produce them.  We exist to spread excitement about strawberries and hope that you will benefit from the information contained here.

Whether you want information on growing strawberries, eating strawberries, scientific information on the actual strawberry plants or strawberry varieties, or even information about where you can purchase strawberry plants or strawberry seeds, you will find help on Strawberry Plants .org.  This entire site is dedicated exclusively to all things related to the strawberry plant.

Be sure to browse the Reference Pages to the left (or just below this paragraph).  They are a wealth of information on topics related to learning about strawberry plants.  Be sure to come back often as we regularly update this site with new information and details about strawberries and strawberry plants!  And, of course, remember that this site is best read with a bowl of fresh strawberries in hand…

This list is of the most-used pages on StrawberryPlants.org.  Click the links below to go to the appropriate pages:

Growing Strawberries – a comprehensive guide to growing your own strawberries.
Buy Strawberry Plants (by variety) – a near-comprehensive directory of online retailers for strawberries, organized by variety.
Strawberry Plants for Sale (by nursery) – a near-comprehensive directory of nurseries offering mail-order plants, with their offerings listed.
Buy Strawberry Seeds (by variety) – a near-comprehensive directory of online retailers for strawberry seeds, organized by variety.
Strawberry Plant – an encyclopedic resource for scientific and historical information about the humble strawberry plant.
Strawberry Seeds – information about saving seeds, germinating seeds, and general strawberry seed information.
Strawberry Plants Library – a listing of other helpful strawberry resources for learning about all aspects of strawberries and care.
Pick Your Own Strawberries – a directory of pick-your-own strawberry locations in all 50 states.
Strawberry Picking – a guide for picking strawberries, including etiquette and other considerations.
Strawberry Varieties – a detailed discussion of the different types of strawberries, as well as a sortable list of cultivars.
Strawberry Recipes – an amazing cookbook full of sumptuous recipes calling for strawberries across the edible spectrum.
Strawberry News – a listing of events and news pertaining to the strawberry plant or growing strawberries.
Strawberry FAQ – a question and answer series containing actual user-submitted questions and their answers.
Strawberry Festivals – a directory of happy-time strawberry festivals across the country.

Contaminated Strawberries Still a Problem

contaminated strawberriesThe familiar taste and wonderful aroma may not be all you are getting from your local supermarket when you buy a clam shell carton of your favorite spring and summer fruit.  According to the annual list compiled by the Environmental Working Group (EWG), contaminated strawberries are still a problem.  Each year, the EWG analyzes data from the U.S. Department of Agriculture and Food and Drug Administration.  The then compile their lists: the Clean Fifteen and Dirty Dozen.  The Dirty Dozen are the top 12 fruits and vegetables that contain the highest and most numerous residual amounts of pesticides and other potentially harmful chemicals on/in the foods we consume.

Are Contaminated Strawberries Necessary?

Due to the fragility of strawberries, many pesticides and other chemicals are often used in the conventional production of the crops.  The chemicals and technologies have allowed the strawberry industry to be a multi-billion dollar industry.  However, what price do we pay over the long haul by consuming trace amounts of the chemicals used in their cultivation?  The verdict is out, but it is generally accepted that eating contaminated strawberries is less desirable than eating uncontaminated ones.

Continue reading Contaminated Strawberries Still a Problem

Growing Strawberries in Gutters

growing strawberries in guttersQ: Growing Strawberries in Gutters?

On May 27, 2017, Marlene asked:

I have seen pictures of strawberries grown in gutters. I think people are growing strawberries in gutters so they are off the ground so the rain and soil don’t rot them. They are cleaner and look beautiful. Do you have any information on this method? I want to transplant my strawberries into this system. They don’t do as good when they are on the ground. My old raised beds, the wood has rotted and I need to move them soon. Plus, I have the strawberries with the runners. If I do it in an “A” structure I would cut the runners off. Put one gutter on the top of the “A” and two gutters down the sides of the “A” and so forth. Have you seen this done? I would really like to try it for this summer. How would I deal with the plants through the winter. Take the structure apart and store the plants in my basement? I would want to save them some how for the next year.

Continue reading Growing Strawberries in Gutters

Strawberry Roots

strawberry rootsWhat is the key to a heaping harvest of mouth-watering, juicy, delightful strawberries?  Simply put: the strawberry roots.  Healthy strawberry roots are the key to a healthy strawberry plant.  Roots are just roots, right?  Well, the fine filaments that absorb the needed nutrients from the soil that help each plant set a heavy crop of strawberries are a bit more sophisticated than you might imagine.  This article will help you understand the nature and importance of strawberry root systems.

Types of Strawberry Roots

There are two types of strawberry roots: primary roots and secondary roots.  Primary roots are the main roots of each strawberry plant.  Primary strawberry roots carry absorbed water and nutrients from the soil into the crown of the strawberry plant.  These roots are perennial in nature and survive for multiple years.

Secondary strawberry roots are also called “feeder” roots.  They are short-lived.  A normal lifespan for feeder roots is days to weeks.  The secondary strawberry roots are much finer than the primary roots.  Consequently, they are damaged very easily.  The actual water and nutrient absorption is performed by these roots.

Continue reading Strawberry Roots

Strawberry Plants Information

strawberry plants informationStrawberry plants information is plentiful on the internet.  Lots of useful nuggets are already prominent and readily available on this site.  I get many questions, however, about the strawberry plant itself.  So, it may be helpful to revisit some of the general characteristics about the strawberry plant.

Basic Strawberry Plants Information

Habit: Strawberry plants are non-woody.  They are classified as forbs.  Since they have no woody tissue to support tall growth, they are short. The four major anatomical features of strawberry plants include the crown, leaves, roots, and runners.  The plants typically reach a maximum height of around one foot (12 inches) in height, but can be a bit taller or a bit smaller.

Continue reading Strawberry Plants Information

How Fast Do Strawberry Plants Grow?

how fast do strawberry plants growQ: How Fast Do Strawberry Plants Grow?

On January 26, 2017, Mostafa, asked: How fast do strawberry plants grow in km/h?

Answer to: How Quickly D0 Strawberry Plants Grow?

Mostafa,
No one has ever asked me before how fast in km/h a strawberry plant grows! An average modern strawberry plant can be expected to reach towering heights of about 12 inches at its highest point (it is, after all, a forb). It usually takes an established strawberry plant about 2 months from the break of dormancy to get there. A new seedling will typically take around 6 months to reach that milestone after germination, depending on its environment.

Continue reading How Fast Do Strawberry Plants Grow?

What Causes Brown Spots on Strawberries?

brown spots on strawberriesQ: What Causes Brown Spots on Strawberries?

On January 3rd, 2017, Jim asked:

I made an incredible raised bed garden just for strawberry plants. The plants have bloomed and now the berrys are turning brown. What is the likely cause and is there a remendy for this situation? I have planted strawberry plants in a raised bed planter using organic soil … I'm in central Florida and the plants are doing splendid, however, the berry turns brown and it appears as if the seeds on the berry fall off. I have found no reference to this situation in any websites I have perused. I’m hoping you can clue me in to whats happening, or at least give me the proper words for the obituary.

Answer to: What Causes Brown Spots on Strawberries?

Jim,
It can be extremely frustrating to spend as much time and effort making a great strawberry bed only to have your strawberries turn brown or rot on the plants before you get to enjoy the sweet fruits of your labor.  There are several things that can cause brown spots on strawberries, but the most common two are rot caused by partial animal or insect feeding and a fungal organism.  The first (pests) is likely self-explanatory.  The second, however, can be more insidious.  This post will deal with the second major cause of brown spots on strawberries: leather rot.

Continue reading What Causes Brown Spots on Strawberries?

Strawberries and Esophageal Cancer

strawberries and esophageal cancer mechanismsEveryone loves to eat strawberries.  The signature aroma and exquisite taste are known throughout the whole world.  And, while strawberries are universally loved, there exists a fiend that is universally known and despised: cancer.  While I have written in the past about some of the health benefits of strawberries, recent research is showing that strawberries and esophageal cancer may be linked as well.

Primarily, research done on esophageal cancer is revealing that the oral consumption of freeze-dried strawberries in powdered form can prevent precancerous esophageal changes from progressing to full-blown esophageal cancer.  In fact, while the effect in rats was significant, the randomized, blinded, phase II trial performed in China over 6 months was very promising for the future of strawberries and esophageal cancer.

Continue reading Strawberries and Esophageal Cancer

Winterizing Strawberry Plants

winterizing strawberry plantsWinterizing strawberry plants is necessary for gardeners in many areas.  As the temperatures drop each year, people write in asking when and how to winterize strawberry plants.  This post will cover the basics and help you determine how and when to protect your strawberry plants as the weather cools.

Why Winterize Strawberries?

Strawberry plants are perennial.  They produce for many years after the initial planting, and they can thrive for very long periods if a rotation is used to keep plants fresh.  But, there is a problem with perennial plants.  How do they survive the freezing temperatures of the winter months?  Well, strawberries are classified as forbs.  Consequently, they don't have the thick bark that protects many other perennials like most trees.  If they don't get extra protection (at least in the colder Zones), they will either die or suffer cold injury.  Both death and injury can significantly hamper your plants' ability to grow strawberries for you!

Continue reading Winterizing Strawberry Plants

How to Keep Birds Away from Strawberries (Organic!)

how to keep birds away from strawberriesFor any home gardener, birds can be a problem.  Berries of all sorts disappear down the beaks of our feathered foes.  Unfortunately, strawberries are not exception.  Frustrated people ask fairly frequently how to keep birds away from strawberries.  Well, fret not, my friends.  I have full faith that you can out-smart the flying fiends.  Most folks know that birds aren't brilliant.  In fact, they are quite mentally diminutive.  However, they do learn quickly where the fast food may be found.  If you have already surrendered a crop of strawberries to the neighborhood aviators, this method might be more difficult to pull off.  If you haven't, you might take a subtle satisfaction at tricking the fluff-brains into leaving your harvest alone…

How to Keep Birds Away from Strawberries (with trickery!)

Continue reading How to Keep Birds Away from Strawberries (Organic!)

The Archer Strawberry Variety

archer strawberry varietyIt has taken fifteen years for the Archer strawberry variety to come to fruition.  There is quite a bit of effort and a ton of patience involved in bringing a new strawberry variety to market.  And, the new Archer strawberry variety is no exception.  The New York State Agricultural Experiment Station in Geneva, New York (Cornell University), has finally released the variety that was selected in 2001.  Courtney Weber, associate professor in the School of Integrative Plant Science, is the man responsible for this new and exceptional variety.  If early indicators are correct, this berry could significantly boost both farming revenues and culinary enjoyment.

What Makes the Archer Strawberry Variety Special?

Strawberry plants can be fickle.  They often succumb to fungal pathogens, and pests seem to enjoy munching on them just as much as humans do.  So, whenever the process of strawberry selection begins for a new variety, one of the main goals is to ensure that the plants can survive in the locations for which it is developed.  Archer does just that.  It is hardy and resistant to most of the common strawberry pathogens that can inflict losses on gardeners and commercial growers alike.

Hardiness isn't the most notable characteristic of the Archer strawberry variety, however.  Size matters.  Archer is a gigantic strawberry variety.  The berries are very large, topping out at a staggering 50 grams (a little bit less than 2 ounces).  That is quite large for a strawberry.  Big berries have been bred before, though.  The new Archer strawberry variety succeeds in another category where other large-fruited varieties have notably failed: taste.

Continue reading The Archer Strawberry Variety