Strawberry weeding advice

Hi! We have a small garden (approx. 10' x 20') in our back yard with some strawberries in it. I'm in Southern California, and right now it's a combination of weeds, dead grass, and green strawberry plants. My question is, can I mow that area & not kill the strawberries? Mowing is the easiest way to clear it out, but keeping those plants healthy enough to produce fruit is of paramount importance. If it'll harm them, we'll just have to dig in there & pull weeds. Another complicating factor is that we've been experiencing a cold snap (freezing at night) recently here in SoCal, so I'm wondering if the tall grass is helping them withstand that. If so, I'll probably leave the plants alone for a few weeks. Thanks in advance.
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Edward wrote:

If it doesn't kill them it will set them back and the grass and weeds will just spring up again, probably quicker than the strawberries. What is your long term plan for the area?

Another possibility is to create a strawberry bed and transfer them all to it then you can deal with the rest however you like. Wait until the last frost when the strawbs will start to grow.

Strawberries will certainly stand a hard frost, how cold does it get overnight?
David
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Hi! It's just a rectangular area immediately outside the patio door.. It's just mostly filled with a mix or strawberries & 1 1/2' tall dead, brown grass...which does come out easily. It's just completely encompassing the strawberry plants. Our latest Pacific storm has resulted in temps down to around 32 deg. F. or a few degrees below, at night. The reason I asked about the mowing is that we also have a small red raspberry patch which seems to thrive on being cut back severely every couple of years in wintertime. I was just curious if the strawberries might respond the same way. It looks like there isn't any easy way out of the weeding. LOL. Thanks!
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Freak storm path for you guys, it should pass soon and your berries should be fine. Cane berries do well kept back, strawberries will depend on variety, climate, etc.
http://strawberryplants.org/2010/05/mowing-strawberry-plants /
http://www.mastergardeners.org/picks/growingStrawberries.html
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On Mon, 28 Feb 2011 23:20:29 -0800, Edward wrote:

I live in socal. The cold snaps may ruin a couple of fruits, but the plants are hardy. Worst that will happen is the leaves will die, and new ones will come up soon. I would recommend removing all the grass. Put out some straw for the berries to lay on to keep them from bugs and slugs. I found if the berries touch the dirt, the next day they have holes in them from bug damage.
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