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How to Feed Strawberry Plants

By Kelly Shetsky ; Updated September 21, 2017

Strawberry plants are easy to grow and do well in a variety of soils. There are three main categories--June bearing, everbearing and day neutral. June bearing plants produce the fruit in June, everbearing have two or three harvests annually and day neutral strawberries produce fruit throughout the growing season. Feed strawberry plants to maintain the fertility of the soil and promote the best fruit production and plant growth.

Buy a fertilizer with a 10-10-10 ratio. That tells you the ratio between nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium. Nitrogen develops leaves and gives the plants a strong green color, phosphorous helps roots grow and potassium encourages disease resistance.

Consider using a slow release fertilizer when you plant the strawberries, so the plants are fed through the season.

Use one half to one lb. of fertilizer per 100 square feet of planting bed. Spread it uniformly through the bed and work it in around strawberry plants using a garden hoe. Apply the fertilizer every ten days from flowering until harvest.

Mulch strawberries to protect them in the winter. They are susceptible to the freezing and thawing that occur. Mulch helps insulate the plants, keeping warm air in the soil.

Lay down mulch such as wood chips, oat straw, wheat or salt hay in mid to late November. Avoid using leaves because they become matted down and can smother the strawberries.

Spread 14 to 16 pounds of mulch per 100 square feet of strawberry plants. The goal is to have a two inch thick cover.

Remove the mulch from the plant crowns with a rake or by hand in the spring. Wait until there is new growth because lifting it up too early will make the plant more susceptible to frost damage.


Things You Will Need

  • Gloves
  • Fertilizer
  • Garden hoe
  • Rake
  • Mulch


  • Wear gloves when spreading mulch or fertilizer.

About the Author


Based in New York State, Kelly Shetsky started writing in 1999. She is a broadcast journalist-turned Director of Marketing and Public Relations and has experience researching, writing, producing and reporting. She writes for several websites, specializing in gardening, medical, health and fitness, entertainment and travel. Shetsky has a Bachelor of Arts in communications from Marist College.