Are Container Strawberries Perennial?

are container strawberries perennialThis is a question submitted to Strawberry Plants .org by a reader. The information provided in response to the question may benefit others with the same or similar inquiries. Therefore, it has been added to the archive page of submitted questions. See the Strawberry FAQ for more questions, or use the search box at the top right of this page to search this site for information.

Q: Are Container Strawberries Perennial?

On July 31, 2010, Marilyn Sommer asked:

If a person grows strawberries in a container, will they grow back the next year or do you have to replant them every year. will you get many berries if using a container?  Thinking about next year…
Thanks,
Marilyn

Answer to: Are Container Strawberries Perennial?

Marilyn,
As long as you take proper care of them, they will come back.  You should not have to replant them.  The number of berries you get depends on the amount of nutrients the strawberry plants get.  If they are tightly packed in a container, they won’t do well.  If they are in good soil with appropriate water, they will produce just about as well as any other planting modality.

[ are container strawberries perennial ]

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26 comments to Are Container Strawberries Perennial?

  • Mr. Strawberry

    Kathy Hunter,
    If you aren’t in a Zone where the temperatures drop too cold, you can safely keep the plants outside up against a heated wall of the house. You can also place them in a root cellar or other equivalent space, just be sure to water them! Good luck!

  • Kathy Hunter

    I came across your site and have learned so much from it. THANK YOU! One thing I couldn’t find though, where do I put my potted strawberries in the winter if I don’t have an attached garage? I do have a garage, but not attached. I have a basement,but that’s heated. Any ideas??

  • Mr. Strawberry

    Mary Lee,
    You can plant them in containers, but you will need to give them extra protection where you live. See this for more info! Good luck!

  • Mary Lee

    I got strawberry plants from Oklahoma, I live in Minnesota, can I plant them in containers and can they stay outside thru our harsh winters? Do I need to cover them or protect them in any way?

  • Mr. Strawberry

    Jackie,
    You are off to a great start! Even though you’ll be growing indoors, I’d recommend reading the Growing Strawberries reference page. Adapt as many of the principles for indoor use as possible for best results. Good luck!

  • Jackie

    Great site! I’m trying to teach my little girl about gardening, and strawberries are a great choice for a kid – but we live in a townhouse. My only outside area is the front stoop, in front of which is a city bus stop. These kids were pretty good about leaving our tomatoes alone last year, but I don’t know that they will be able to help themselves with strawberries – so we are growing them indoors. Would appreciate any advice you have for this particular arrangement. We already know to have grow lights on them during the day, and when we’re ready to fruit, we’ll need to “do the deed” for the bees with a little brush. They’re evies (day neutral), which seems like it should be a good choice for indoors. We got them as roots, sprouted them in water, then transplanted three of them into a 3′ x 1′ box. What else do I need to know?

  • Mr. Strawberry

    Tara,
    I would remove any dead leaves and leaves that are damaged. The new growth should suffice to produce a good crop! Good luck!

  • Tara

    Hello, I have strawberries growing in a raised garden, (in Michigan) this year we had a very
    Mild winter and the plants never fully died off, I still see a lot of leaves etc. it even looks like there is new growth already?! Is this strange for end of March? My question is do I cut all the leaves down to just the new growth? Or do I do anything at all? So far I’ve removed some of the dead crunchy leaves and vines and left everything else, thanks!

  • Mr. Strawberry

    Raymond Pan,
    You don’t have to cut the plants back in winter. Once the cold weather hits, the plants should enter dormancy, and the vegetative material will die back to the crown. When that happens, gently remove or rake it away to prevent fungal infections. Good luck!

  • Raymond Pan

    Hello,
    Should I cut the plant back in winter?

  • Mr. Strawberry

    Lillian Generous,
    You are correct: mature strawberry plants often multiply their crowns. You can either divide and replant the crowns in their own containers, or you can choose one that looks to be particularly healthy and vigorous and re-plant in your pot while discarding the rest. Good luck!

  • Lillian Generous

    As you know, when you plant one strawberry plant in a container, it expands by producing new plants around it( not stolons), and sometimes the container gets full. For this particular plant, Its like the soil is no longer enough for the plant. Even the water requirements have gone high. How can i reduce the plant in the container without hurting it?

  • Mr. Strawberry

    Benjamin Pacheco,
    If the strawberries aren’t protected, and the birds find them, yes. Even wild critters love strawberries!

  • Benjamin Pacheco

    IF I plant strawberrys outside on my yard, will the birds eat the fruit?

  • Mr. Strawberry

    Stephy,
    Yes, you should be able to save the plants. See here for help, and you can try a liberal application of diatomaceous earth to see if that will work. As for the fertilizer, I am not sure how to modify the concentrations of the nitrogen, potassium, and phosphorus. But, they do sell strawberry-specific fertilizers at most garden stores and co-ops. Good luck!

  • Stephy

    Hi Mr. Strawberry,
    Thank you for answering my question. I think I just found out why my strawberry fruits are weird and sour. I found a small hole on a leave this morning. That’s an indication of spider mites manifestation. Upon a closer look, the other leaves have indents on them too. The leaves are still green and none has fallen off yet. Do you think it can be saved? Or I should just throw out the plant and start again next year?
    And for my fertilizer (18-18-21), is there anything that I can do to make the concentration right for strawberry plants? I don’t want to just throw the whole box out.

  • Mr. Strawberry

    Stephy,
    Possibly. Strawberries prefer 10-10-10, but you need to apply it at appropriate times. I’d recommend reviewing the information on the Growing Strawberries reference page. Also, there are several reasons why strawberry plants don’t produce well. Good luck!

  • Stephy

    It’s my first experience with gardening. I bought two everbearing strawberry plants 2 weeks ago. Each has few green strawberries forming when I got them. I transplanted them to new pots immediately and added water soluble tomato feed (18-18-21). I keep them indoor and water when the soil looks dry. I picked the two strawberry fruits on one plant that have turned red. But they were so sour and the inside of the fruits look bright red. Shouldn’t normal strawberries have some white part at the centre of the fruit? Also the other plant has not grown since. The berries are still green and not getting bigger

    Did I do something wrong?

  • Mr. Strawberry

    Greenisfree,
    Yes, I can believe it! Strawberries are very hardy, although they can be damaged by extreme cold. For help, see the growing strawberries page, and good luck!

  • Greenisfree

    I am from western Massachusetts winter this year came in like a lamb and left like a lion. I had a couple of strawberry plants in the front lawn and let them be. Can you believe they survived and already have new growth. I’m pretty excited, yes, this is exciting lol. My question is what now? Do I add fertilizer? What do I do?

  • Mr. Strawberry

    Pat,
    Yes, you should take precautions with your strawberries to ensure they survive the winter. Taking them into the garage is a good option, and they do need to be watered to keep them from drying out and dying from dehydration. I’d recommend reviewing the posts on overwintering strawberries for more information. Good luck!

  • Pat

    I have 2 plants in clay pots and I live in Iowa. do I need to take these inside for the winter? Our garage is heated, but just enough to take the chill off. Should I take them in there? Also, do I need to water them all winter?

  • Mr. Strawberry

    Lance,
    Yes, you can grow both everbearing and June-bearing plants in the same container, as long as the container is big enough to support two plants. Good luck!

  • Lance

    Can one grow June bearing plants and Everbearing plants in the same pot/container? I just ordered both and wondering what my options are.

  • Mr. Strawberry

    subhash,
    The mother plant should do just fine this year. You might want to add some fertilizer to the potted mother plant this year. I’d recommend reading the material on the Growing Strawberries reference page. It should help. Good luck!

  • subhash

    i am subhash from india, i have planted strawbery plant in a container last year once it has olready fruited and this year i saw that about twenty to twenty five runners came out and out of that i have planted fifteen new plant so i want to ask that the mother will get harm due to more runners or it will fruit this year also. and another thing will i have to change the soil of the mother plant or continue with the same, so kindly gide me. waiting for reply.

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