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Keyword Search Results for:
strawberries

7 Found

Question: 263-5201
Our three year old strawberries are in bloom and we have little beetles crawling around them. Can we spray them and with what? Daniel, Pelican Rapids. MN

Mort's Answer:
You can use a powder Bordeaux Mix. Be very careful not to allow any dust to get on the flowers. Dust the soil and the under leaves Since snout beetles cut off the bud, you are right on time. I suspect the infestation is not too severe. It is always advisable to plant strawberries on hills that are a foot to a foot and a half. Plant strawberries in clean soil to alleviate the prospect of insects and disease. Rotating strawberries every three years is also smart. Rich organic well drained soil is best.. Lastly, always lay down straw in between the rows of hills.

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Question: 436-3410
We have a strawberry patch that is 10'x30'. We have a lot of strawberries. Unfortunately, the slugs are getting half of them. What can I do? Jerry, Taylorville, IL

Mort's Answer:
A temporary measure is to give them saucers of beer and get them drunk. They stay out into the early hours of the morning and the sun dries them out and they die immediately from alcoholism. With an area as large as 300 sq.ft., I would suggest that in the fall, you should dig out all the plants and replant them in elevated rows with a black plastic mulching on the sides of the rows. This slippery slope will discourage all invaders.

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Question: 934-1913
I have been using Preen. Is there a less expensive way to keep the weeds out from around my strawberries? Lois, Taylorville, IL

Mort's Answer:
If you can rake it level, you can sprinkle corn starch over the soil to stop weeds before they get started. You could cultivate the patch every ten days with a dust mulch as a second option. This is done by scarifying the top two inches. Preen is very effective as a pre-emergent herbicide and controls a lot of weeds.

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Question: 1101-1114
My strawberries, which are under three feet of snow, have a lot of runners. They are in a three foot by three foot area. We did not get a lot of big fruit last year. Any suggestions? Katie, Marquette, MI

Mort's Answer:
Most commercial growers of strawberries put in a new crop every year. You can cut the runners and start a new hill. Be sure to get runners with some root under them. Strawberries are hilled to prevent rotting. You definitely need fresh straw underneath the branches in the spring. A little dusting with bonemeal will help bring continual blooms and bigger berries. If you decide to keep the old crown, transplant it to the top of the hill. Two eight inch high hills that are a foot and a half apart will suffice.

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Question: 1131-2114
Every year I have had big juicy strawberries from the same plants. Last year they were bitter and smaller. Is there anything I can add to the soil.? Rudy, Norwich, CT

Mort's Answer:
It is not a good practice to grow the same plant in the same location each year. Most growers plant new strawberry plants each year. You could add some lime each year in the fall. Adding hydrated lime now could be too late to change the pH. You have probably depleted the phosphorus in that spot. I would use some 5-10-10 now and plant a different veggie like kale or cabbage when the strawberries are finished.

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Question: 1259-2115
My strawberries are not growing well this year. Should I be giving them some fertilizer? Diane, Gardner, MA

Mort's Answer:
Aged manure is best for berries when applied in the fall. Plants need to be revitalized by pruning and using new stolons. I have verbearing ones and they are in their third year and dong fine. I would reset them in hills. After making furrows on each side, place straw in the valleys to catch the fruit. Each fall stir the old straw into the soil and repair your hills. I would recommend getting some new plants as well. The older plants may have run the course and cannot make it up the hills.

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Question: 1336-5115
I have a strawberry patch that developed from a strawberry pot. The planter did not produce many berries but the patch around the pot grew to 10 x 20 square feet. What is the best mulch for my everbearing patch. Ed, Cranston, RI

Mort's Answer:
They are called strawberries for a very good reason. Straw allows more air to circulate while keeping the found and the plants warmer. I would suggest that you root prune all the clumps this fall. They are best maintained by building furrows and hill rows. This could be four rows that run 20 feet. This allows for the fruit to fall on new straw that is laid when the berries are green. This means less rotting of the fruit. If you do not have the time, you can just lay some straw for mulch now. You definitely need to make discreet plants by root pruning now. You can side dress your hills easily in the spring with 5-10-10 fertilizer or the whole over reaching area now.

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