Planting strawberries from seed takes patience and planning.
image by Jonathan Gill/Flickr.com
New strawberry plants develop from root shoots. However, they can also be started from seed. Starting strawberries from seed can be difficult at first. Most people don't know that strawberry seeds have to be cold-treated before they can grow. Usually, this is done when the seeds drop from the fruit and freeze on the ground through the winter. However, you can simulate the same process with your freezer.
Seal your strawberry seeds in a sandwich bag. Release any air bubbles, and seal the bag tightly.
Put your strawberry seeds in the freezer to cold-treat them. Leave them in your freezer for 1 month.
Remove your storage bag of seeds and set them aside until they reach room temperature. Do not open your bag until they are ready.
Fill your starter pots with loamy soil. Add a couple of seeds to each pot. Sift a tiny amount of dirt over each seed so that they are barely covered.
Keep your soil damp, but not soggy during germination. Choose a spot outdoors to transplant your strawberries when they are 2 inches tall. Make sure the spot you pick has sandy, loamy soil. Do not grow them near potatoes, peppers, eggplants or tomatoes.
Add a homemade compost to the soil as fertilizer. Dig and turn the soil under to a depth of 8 inches. Dig holes big enough for the roots of each strawberry plant. Space the holes 4 to 5 inches apart.
Set the roots vertically into the hole. Pack your soil in a mound around the roots and press down firmly. Water your strawberries immediately. Repeat watering twice a week. When strawberries begin to appear, increase watering so that each plant gets at least 1 inch of water per week.
Weed around your strawberries regularly. Mulch around them when temperatures reach below 20 degrees by adding 2 to 3 inches of straw over the plant and watering the straw. The straw will help to protect your plants through the winter.
Remove the straw mulch once new leaves begin to grow and turn yellow from lack of sun. Be sure there is no danger of temperatures reaching below 20 degrees Fahrenheit.
Remove weeds from around the new plants, and cut off any dead leaves on the plant itself. Add more homemade compost to the soil.