It’s that time of year again. The weather is getting colder, you’ve cleaned your yard from the fallen leaves, and brought in all your delicate flowers. Now it’s time to start thinking about putting your strawberry plants to bed for the winter!
Learn what you need to do to ensure your plants are well taken care of and return healthy next spring with this guide. Follow these steps, and you’ll be enjoying fresh strawberries all season long!
What You’ll Need
Here are some materials you’ll need to winterize your strawberry plants. You only need four things and then you’ll be on your way to berry goodness!
- Shovel (optional)
Step-by-Step Guide to Winterizing Your Ground-Planted Strawberries
It’s time to prepare your strawberry plants for winter and make sure they will be healthy and happy when spring comes around. Winterizing your strawberry plants is a vital part of gardening, so take the right steps to get them ready! However, winterizing strawberry plants in the ground vs potted strawberry plants is vastly different. Here are some tips on how to put your ground-planted strawberry plants to bed for winter:
Step One – Ensure They Are Dormant
To successfully winterize your strawberry plants, you need to ensure that they are dormant. You can confirm this by checking the crowns. If you see no new active growth, your strawberries are ready to go to bed!
Typically strawberry plants growing in zones 5 and lower go into dormancy by late November. If your growing this plant in zones 6, 7, or 8, dormancy occurs in December.
Step Two – Remove Any Dead Vegetation
Removing dead and wilted leaflets from your strawberry patch is an important step in keeping your plants healthy. This helps to reduce the chances of disease and ensures that the foliage looks neat and tidy.
Make sure you remember to discard of the leaves scattered underneath your plants. To remove dead and wilted leaves, it’s best to use a rake.
Step Three – Mulch
Mulching your strawberry plants is an essential part of winterizing them. It provides better drainage, air circulation, keeps soil temperatures moderate, prevents weeds from invading, and reduces or eliminates the need for frequent watering.
The amount of mulch you should use will depend on your climate and local environment. In colder climates, a thicker layer of mulch may be needed to protect the plants from freezing temperatures.
There are many different mulching materials you can use. Straw is preferred, but it has to be free of dirt and debris. In addition to straw, pine needles work wonders as well.
Other organic matter, such as leaves and hay, are not be suitable for strawberry plants. Hay is known to carry grass and weed seeds, leaving clumps and trapping moisture. Do not create a moisture barrier by packing the mulch down too hard. The material should be loose enough to allow airflow and water drainage. It’s best to apply the mulch when the soil is moist, but not saturated.
Tips for Winterizing Potted Strawberry Plants
Winterizing your pot planted strawberries is an essential part of protecting them from frost damage and ensuring they produce sweet berries during warmer months.
Follow these quick tips to winterize your potted plants so you can enjoy delicious strawberries once the growing season is in full swing.
Placing Them in the Ground
Grab your strawberries pots and dig holes in an area that’s free of snow. Place your potted strawberry plants into the ground. Pack them down tight so they stay snug and warm through the winter. Now it’s time to mulch them up! You can use straw, pine needles, or whatever mulch you prefer that allows proper airflow. This will provide extra insulation and protection from pesky critters or frosty days.
Use Surrounding Heat
If you live in a milder climate, use the power of your home to help protect your plants. Place your strawberry pots along the wall on the sheltered side of your house and give them a good layer of mulch. It’ll keep them warm and cozy all winter long!
Use Your Garage
If you’re lucky enough to have an unheated garage, then you can winterize those strawberry plants there! No need to mulch them inside the garage, but make sure they’re against an inner wall if your location gets super cold. This is a great way to winterize your strawberry plants as long as the temperatures don’t dip below 20 degrees Fahrenheit in the space.
Pro-Tip: Keep your strawberry plants hydrated over the winter. Periodically check the moisture level of your plants and if they need water, you can put a handful of snow on each of your potted plants, each week. This will ensure that they are getting enough hydration to stay alive during the winter months.
Be The Berry Best
Now that you know how to take care of your strawberry plants during their winter slumber, it’s time to get to work! Don’t forget to mulch and keep them hydrated.
Share this article with your friends and family who have strawberry plants so they can keep them healthy too! Do you have any tips or tricks for winterizing strawberry plants? Leave a comment below!