The Q&A Archives: seperating plants too close and Strawberry question

Question: Hello.

I am interested in re-planting a few of the vegetables I originally planted too close together. Is there a way to do this carefully without destroying the roots?

Also, the strawberry plants I bought last year bloomed this year, as I found out they do in their second season... will these bloom again next year or are they finished?

Thank you in advance,
Jolee M. Calaban

Answer: Moving your overcrowded veggies can be done, if you do it carefully. Start by soaking the soil the morning of the day you plan to move them. In the early evening dig the plants and move them. Water them well after moving. Expect them to look pathetic for a few days after the move, until the roots become re-established. Moving them in the evening will allow the roots to settle in before next morning's sunshine, which will help lessen the transplant shock. Or, instead of moving them, many gardeners practice what we call intensive gardening. Veggies are crowded together in a small space and as long as they are fed and watered adequately, they don't seem to mind sharing the space. Just something to think about.

Strawberries are perennials and should be expected to live 3-4 years. During that time they will send out runners which are actually new plants. If you select a few of the runners and coax them into rooting in a row adjacent to your existing plants, they will be ready to produce berries by the time your original strawberry plants are spent and need to be removed from the garden. If you do this each time your plants set runners, you'll always have healthy new strawberry plants that bloom and produce fruit.

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