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.
Thanks in advance.
mowing will not kill the strawberries, but it
won't help them either.
the strawberries need those leaves to make
the fruit. you'll reduce or eliminate the crop
by cutting them back.
leaving the weeds in reduces the nutrients
and moisture that the strawberries can get at.
so best to carefully weed around the plants
you wish to encourage fruit from.
a practical approach to rejuvinating the
patch is to pick a few areas where the most
strawberry plants remain and clear out as
many weeds as possible around those plants.
then add some composted manure (not fresh
manure!) and then mulch over that. this
will help keep the weeds down.
the remaining area i would turn under and
then plant a cover crop as soon as conditions
are suitable. adding organic mulch to keep
the weeds down and help build the soil
fertility for future years. the strawberries
will spread into these areas as they grow.
eventually you will want to rotate the
entire patch in sections so you can keep up
with the heavy feeding demands by either
ammending or cover cropping.
Thanks! It looks like there's no easy way out of hand weeding. I think
I'll let it go for a few weeks though. A series of recent Pacific
storms has resulted in temps down around freezing at night. Maybe that
tall, dead grass surrounding the plants is helping to keep them warm
Thanks for your advice!
i don't know the variety you have but some time ago I planted 100 Tn
Beauties. They didn't bear the first year. We had to weed them by hand.
Once you get the weeds out it is not difficult to keep them out just
have to keep it up.
We had so many berries, for years, until I went to Nam, that it kept all
of the family rosy fingered.
It was not uncommon to pick three gallons or so per day during the
summer. Of course they were fertilized with chemical.
Unless it is well rotted manure, I don't want to eat ground bearing
berries off it. Don't need any, of a variety, of diseases.
Cut the runners between plants each year. That assures the plants, of
years before bear more. The new plants may not bear until the next season.
You will have several times the starting plants every year afterwards,
The biggest problem we had was snails.
Really good berries draw the critters fast. You'll lose some.
If they are the new shippers or cardboard berries(my term) you probably
won't have too man pests.
There is nothing like GOOD fresh ripe, tangy, sweet, aromatic, berries
that taste like they smell or even better, strawberries and cream, for
breakfast. If you haven't had any you will never buy another shipper,
when you do.
they are pretty cold tolerant
and hardy plants.
now is a good time to get the
weeds out and the soil prepared
before the active growing season
starts. you might even uproot
some of them, plug 'em back in the
dirt and water them when you're
done and most will survive.
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