Strawberries – when you’ve grown your own, only then do you appreciate the aroma and flavour that is so superior to any shop bought fruit. They take up the minimum amount of room and are easy to grow. In fact, the more miserable they are, the better the amount and flavour they produce. Just watch out for those blackbirds which simply cannot resist the plump, scarlet redness of the berries.
Choose a sunny spot with good quality soil. They can survive in slightly sandy soils but they do enjoy some added loam. Sheltered spots are always best. Plants are spaced 30cm or 12in aprt in the open ground. They can be alternatively grown in growbags with 10 per bag, in hanging baskets or containers.
Most plants crop between 60 and 90days after planting.
Always need watering during the hot drier months. Most do not need protection but a there are a few varieties which will need frost protection
Most plants are bought as dormant and bare-rooted if purchasing in the Spring, otherwise obtain them as root cuttings or plants which have produced runners and set their roots in the soil.
Strawberry Varieties & Cultivars
Extra Early In The Summer
cv. Malling Centenary – Bred to mark the 100th anniversary of the leading East Malling Research Station in Kent in the UK. This variety has superb flavour with uniform conical shaped fruit which is well displayed on the plant, making picking quick and easy. Fruiting is from early to late June and even earlier in May if grown under cloches.
cv. Christine – a new summer fruiting strawberry that crops very early. Apparently, 10 to 14 days before the renowned Elsanta which must be early ! sets new standards for fruit quality and disease resistance. Large bright red berries with an excellent flavour and high levels of sweetness. Good resistance to verticillium wilt and powdery mildew. Needs protection from frost. Season: June to early July.
cv. Honeyoye – another early strawberry and very popular since the early 80s. Bright red, round fruits with a classic old fashioned flavour. Excellent for processing especially jam. Heavy cropping. Season is June to early July.
cv. Cambridge favourite – the best known older variety and very much lover of PYO farms. Most gardeners do not grow anything else. Ripening in mid-season and is one of the heaviest cropping varieties. Crops well under a variety of weathers. medium-sized berries which are soft, sweet and juicy with a strong flavour. Resistant to mildew. Season is mid June to mid July.
cv. Elegance – A variety that always delivers exceptional fruit quality. Recent triallist, it produces a large number of heavy fruited trusses on strong, disease resistant, upright plants. Magnificent flavour according to all sensory reports.
cv. Elsanta – It was released at the beginning of the 80s as a heavy cropping mid-season variety. Fruits are large and firm with exceptional flavour later in the season. Crops from mid June to mid July.
cv. Hapil – a mid-season variety which good all round and has been a justifiably popular choice for many years. produces heavy crops with large bright red berries and an excellent sweet flavour. Crops especially well on light soils and in drier conditions. season: late June to mid July.
Late Summer – Early Autumn
cv. Malwina – Probably the latest-fruiting strawberry worth growing in our gardens. This variety has large fruits which are flavour packed and will crop to the end of July and even into mid-August. It is also resistant to many strawberry diseases.
Early Summer Strawberry Plants: Early season strawberry plant varieties usually begin fruiting in late spring. All of our early summer strawberry plants are dispatched as 9cm potted plants.
Mid Summer Strawberry Plants: These plants generally begin producing approximately 8 – 10 days after early season strawberries.
Late Summer Strawberry Plants: These varieties begin their berry production about 14 days after the Early Season strawberries. Our late summer strawberry plants are dispatched as 9cm potted plants.
There is a cross available from soft-fruit suppliers which is raspberry and strawberry hybrid. It tastes like both fruits combined and is known as a Framberry. the plants grow in the same way as strawberries and are easy to maintain. Best grown in hanging baskets and containers.
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