Monday, December 19, 2011

Boosting Strawberries

Growing strawberries is usually very easy, whether they be in a pot or planted directly in the ground. But there are times when strawberries just don't seem to grow the way they should. Dry leaves, little or no fruit, just plain sick. 

Strawberries require plenty of water. Drip irrigation is well worth the time and effort. Try not to use overhead watering, but if you hose water, ensure that it is in the evening or very early morning to avoid sunburn on wet leaves. A fortnightly application of seaweed fertiliser (e.g. Seasol) improves the vigor of the plants. 

My Challenge

This year, I had one pot of strawberries that just lost its zest for life. So I started to research what strawberries really need, rather than just watering in more soluble fertilizer.

Strawberries like a slightly acidic soil with a  pH of 5.0 - 6.0.
Solution: Just add some Pine or Sheaok needles around the strawberries.

I tried a small handful of Sheoak pine needles gathered from our local playground and just watered over as usual.

My test pot was a complete success!
Bursting with flavorsome fruit and very healthy leaf growth.
I've never seen so many strawberries on this bush before.
Picking an average of 4 ripe strawberries per day. 

If you have tried the Pine or Sheoak Needle application on your strawberries, please let me know how it went and if you have had the same success.

Strawberry plant thriving with sheoak pine needles

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