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Edition 24 - March 2023
Sensational Strawberries

Plan on adding fruit to your growing list this year? Strawberries are the perfect introduction to home-grown fruit production; they are fresh, juicy, sweet, and easy to grow. Since spring is strawberry planting season, now is the time to begin.

Let’s Dive Right In!


There are three types of strawberries:

This type of strawberry produces larger berries than the other two types from just one harvest spread out over a week or two in June. June-bearing varieties are the perfect choice for freezing, preserving, dehydrating, jam-jarring, wine-making, or anytime a large quantity of strawberries is needed.

Producing a crop in early summer, mid-summer (if conditions are cool), and finally, in late summer, everbearing varieties form their flower buds when day length reaches 12 hours. They produce fewer and smaller berries than June-bearing varieties.

Day-neutral strawberries produce fruit throughout the growing season but take a break when the weather gets hot and dry. This type does not require long days to set fruit. Like everbearing, this type also has fewer and smaller berries than the June-bearing varieties.

Considering these characteristics will determine which type of strawberry is right for you. Of course, planting some of each type will allow you to harvest berries over an extended period and supply a large crop to preserve your harvest.


Plant strawberries in early spring as soon as the soil is workable. Choose a sunny site with loamy, well-draining soil. A pH between 6 and 7 is ideal. Strawberries will tolerate less-than-perfect conditions and do okay in partial shade; however, the harvest will be less plentiful.

Heavy clay soil with poor drainage is particularly detrimental to a strawberry patch. Because soil drainage is essential, raised beds are often used to grow strawberries. Filling a new bed with Coast of Maine® Castine Blend Raised Bed Mix will provide the perfect planting environment. If planting directly into the ground, work 4 to 6 inches of Coast of Maine® Quoddy Blend Lobster Compost into the soil before planting. This will improve soil health, water retention, and drainage.

Strawberries are available in the early spring in bare-root bundles. When you get your plants home, separate the bundles, clip off any dried leaves, trim the roots up to an inch off, and soak the roots in water for an hour or two before planting. 

Strawberry rows should be approximately three and one-half feet apart, and plants should be spaced one and one-half feet apart. When placing into the ground, fan out the roots, keeping them straight down. It is helpful to build a mound in the center of your planting hole and spread the roots around it before backfilling. Plant the crown even with the soil line. Avoid setting the plants too deep, or the crown will rot, or too shallow, lest the roots dry out. Firm the soil around each plant and water them well.

Although it seems counterproductive, pinch off the strawberry blossoms in the first year. This will help runners quickly develop (next year’s plants) and ensure that your strawberries develop a good root system that will enable them to grow an abundance of fruit in the future.


After Planting:

  • Mulch with straw or salt hay to reduce weeds, retain moisture, cool the soil, and keep fruit clean.

  • Fertilizing is not necessary at planting time. Wait until the plant’s roots are established, about six weeks, then side dress with Coast of Maine® Stonington Blend Organic Plant Food.  

If you're seeking the freshest, best-tasting, healthiest strawberries, home-grown can’t be beaten! Give them a try this spring.

Castine Blend™ Organic & Natural Raised Bed Mix

When filling raised beds, there’s no better choice than Coast of Maine® Castine Blend Raised Bed Mix. This exceptional blend of fully cured compost, peat, biochar, worm castings, dehydrated poultry manure, kelp meal, lobster meal, greensand, lime, and mycorrhizae set the stage for exceptional edible plants.

Quoddy Blend™ Organic & Natural Lobster Compost

Spring beds need rejuvenation, and Coast of Maine® Quoddy Blend Lobster Compost is ideally suited for the job. A proprietary blend of Lobster shell compost, vegetative compost, and sphagnum peat, this rich soil amender will reinvigorate tired garden soil, increase soil drainage, maintain soil moisture, and foster the health of garden plants. 


Learn why it is best to go with Coast of Maine®
when planting strawberries.


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