Newbie with several questions: Wintering over

Right now I have all the leaves from the yard racked into the garden. Is this the best way to mulch the garden for winter?
Should the strawberries be mulched too?
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Gordon wrote:

Not knowing how severe your winter is I cannot guess.
David
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Oh right.
It's Portland, OR. Winters are wet and coldish. We do get below freezing at times. But for the most part, we stay above freezing durring the day.
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Gordon wrote: ...

strawberries are fairly hardy. in places where there is a lot of freeze/thaw cycling a light mulch can help keep them from getting heaved out of the ground. best to do after the ground is frozen, but probably ok in late fall, don't need to cover the leaves of the plants, just the soil and let the leaves poke through.
as the weather warms up in the spring pull the mulch away from the plants to give the plants full exposure to the sun and to let the sun warm up the soil. also a good time to trim off any damaged or withered leaves.
last season i left some plants without mulch at all and they came through just fine, but it was fairly heavy soil (so they would not get dried out or heaved easily). i'm in mid-Michigan (zone 5) where it can get to minus 15F. snow cover is very helpful.
songbird
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