The Q&A Archives: Growing Strawberries

Question: I am planning on having a strawberry garden. I live in zone 6. I heard I should add sand besides peat moss to prepare my strawberry garden. Do you agree? What are the best types of strawberry to grow in zone 6? Is black plastic a good mulch for strawberries? Would straw be better?

Answer: Strawberries grow best in full sunshine, in sandy loam with good drainage. To prepare the bed, spread 3"-4" of compost over the surface of the soil and till it in well. You can add some sand to facilitate drainage and further loosen the soil if necessary. Day-neutral strawberries are extremely productive in your region, so try growing 'Tristar' or 'September Sweet'. Straw is the best mulch for a strawberry bed. It keeps weeds from competing with the plants, helps hold in moisture, and keeps soil from splashing up onto the fruit. As the strawberry plants develop runners you can brush away the straw to allow the runners to root directly in the soil.

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