Strawberry plants can be a little finicky when it comes to their real estate. It is extremely important for any new strawberry grower to identify the best location for strawberry plants among the potential sites. If the location is poorly suited for growing strawberries, you won't reap a big harvest of plump, juicy fruit. But, fear not! This guide will help you locate and identify the best location for strawberry plants among the sites you are considering.
Best Location for Strawberry Plants: Checklist
Strawberry plants need drainage. If planted in a naturally-formed bowl or low spot in the ground, both air and water will have difficulty draining away from your strawberry planting. The absolute best location for strawberry plants will have a slight slope to the land. The ideal grade for a strawberry planting is 5% to 7%. However, anything up to 12% is permissible. Plantings that have a slope less than 5% will result in stagnant air and water. Such plants will suffer a higher rate of failure due to the pooling of water and stagnant air. Both encourage the formation of fungal infections that can permanently damage or outright kill your strawberry plants.
A grade over 12% will introduce other complications. The best location for strawberry plants will have a grade less than 12% because a slope steeper than 12% will cause tillage difficulties and promote erosion and soil quality degradation. While not absolutely contraindicated, plantings on steep locations should be avoided. If absolutely necessary due to the lack of more ideal spots, some of the drawbacks of steep slope plantings can be mitigated by spacing the rows more widely and planting them either with the contours or across the slope.
When deciding upon the best location for strawberry plants, it is important to factor in the history of the locations being considered. If certain plants or crops have preceded a strawberry planting, it can be devastating to a strawberry planting. For more on these crops, refer to Companion Planting Strawberries article. Additionally, if strawberries themselves have been planted in the same location you intend to re-plant with strawberries, a lower yield and poorer plant standards can be expected.
Fortunately, strawberry plants are fairly adaptable. They can perform well in many soil types. The ideal location will be a deep, fertile soil. It will have good internal drainage (to prevent root rot and other problems associated with excess or standing water). The soil will not be compacted, and it will be high in organic matter. Additional organic matter can be added, however. Amending the soil with aged manure will boost production in soil locations lacking optimal levels or organic material.
Best Location for Strawberry Plants: Conclusion
Before planting, it will pay dividends to find the best location for strawberry plants among your available options. Higher yields, happier plants, and a heaping harvest of healthy strawberries can be yours! Be sure to review all the other necessary information about the process here: Growing Strawberries. Learn about the types of strawberries here: Strawberry Varieties. And, good luck!