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Picking Strawberries

June 10th, 2009

Our strawberries are ripe! They’re such a delayed gratification crop since you plant them one year and don’t start harvesting till the next. Last year I planted them and dutifully pinched off the blossoms in order for a larger harvest this year.
My efforts were rewarded because our strawberries are producing like crazy. We’ve been out picking them every evening.
We picked our first berries last Thursday, there were only a few ripe then. It seems like they’re kicking into full gear now, we have to go out and pick every night to keep up with them (we’ve picked 4.5 pounds since last Thurs). The chipmunks and slugs are getting a few, but the Chiots loves it because she gets the ones they start on.
I’m glad I planted 3 different kinds; early, mid and late maturing ones to extend our harvest. We’ve already enjoyed our berries in some strawberry rhubarb crisp, strawberry rhubarb syrup over waffles and of course we’ve eaten a lot as is. You just can’t beat berries ripe from the garden.

Do you grow strawberries in your garden?

21 Comments to “Picking Strawberries”
  1. Mangochild on June 10, 2009 at 5:54 am

    Yes! I am so happy that I can say I do indeed grow strawberries, and they are starting to come into season :-) Delicious. I had a handful with dinner yesterday and it made the meal. Mine are everbearing, so we’ll have to see how they do throughout the season. This weekend I’m planning on going strawberry picking at a local farm to get even more goodies for storage, preserving, and eating!
    But your yield, 4.5 lbs since Thursday, wow! How large of an area did you plant?

    Mangochild’s last blog post.. Tuesdays Independence Days: Week 4

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    • Susy on June 10, 2009 at 8:02 am

      We have two 4×10 foot raised beds full of plants. I also started seeds for Yellow Wonder strawberries a month or so ago, they’re going to be going in as ground cover on a hillside we have.

      Reply to Susy's comment

  2. Julia on June 10, 2009 at 7:02 am

    I’m growing strawberries for the first time this year, and I have 2! Sounds like I need to start pinch the buds off and hope for better next year. Thanks for the tip. :)

    Julia’s last blog post.. CSA Cookbooks (Recipe: Pesto Pasta with Seared Scallops)

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  3. Daphne on June 10, 2009 at 8:23 am

    I used to grow them. Then the chipmunks moved in. They would pick them all green and take a couple of bites out of them, then toss them away and do the next. I never got any strawberries. I should plant them again since I know how to deal with the chipmunks now.

    Daphne’s last blog post.. The Fall Garden. Already?

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    • Susy on June 10, 2009 at 9:12 pm

      I find little half eaten strawberries strewn about the gardens (fairly far away from the strawberry beds), those grinnies – GRRR.

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    • Anna on June 9, 2010 at 9:32 am

      Hi Daphne! How do you deal with chipmunks? I put the netting around my strawberries but it didn’t make any difference… :-(

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      • Susy on June 9, 2010 at 9:46 am

        The netting isn’t the greatest thing, birds and chipmunks get stuck in it and die or you have to put them out of their misery, not something I relish doing. Using white cheesecloth or floating row cover works much better. Chipmunks may still get in though.

        You can either get an outdoor cat, put up an owl house if you live somewhere owls would move in, or put up a chipmunk swimming pool (google that and you’ll find directions). The pool is very effective and the ones I catch go into the compost pile and then feed the garden.

        We do have an outdoor cat now that really help with the chipmunk problem. We had a terrible outbreak and they were digging around the foundation of our home after the owls moved away. So it was either get a cat or some other control method or pay $10,000 to fix foundation problems. I decided on getting rid of the chipmunks.

        If you don’t want to use any of these methods you can pick the strawberries earlier, before they fully ripen. Usually the chipmunks, birds, slugs around here only eat the ripe ones. If you lay them out on a tray they will usually ripen by the next day and they taste just as delicious.

        to Susy's comment

  4. warren on June 10, 2009 at 8:44 am

    Oh definitely we grow strawberries and they are coming on well too. My daughter and I were picking them yesterday and we ate ’til we were full! I love fresh strawberries and don’t really mind sharing a few with the birds and slugs!

    warren’s last blog post.. I’m not dead yet

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  5. inadvertent farmer on June 10, 2009 at 1:32 pm

    We ate our first just yesterday…it was baby boy’s first try of warm, fresh from the garden berries. He of course then wanted to pick all the rest, even the green ones. I had to explain that we have to wait. 2 years olds hate to wait!

    You pics are outstanding, Kim

    inadvertent farmer’s last blog post.. The Very First Time!

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  6. Kelly Butler on June 10, 2009 at 3:50 pm

    YUMMY!! They look beautiful Susy!

    Kelly Butler’s last blog post.. Physical Therapy with Miss Abby

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  7. Pampered Mom on June 10, 2009 at 4:04 pm

    We have three different kinds planted like you do, but this is the first year so no strawberries…just lots of pinching the flowers off.

    Pampered Mom’s last blog post.. Some pictures of the big garden

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  8. pam on June 10, 2009 at 5:17 pm

    I wish we grew them. But we get quite a few from our CSA.

    pam’s last blog post.. Internet Explorer Cannot Open the Internet Site

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  9. Allie on June 10, 2009 at 9:49 pm

    We’re getting a bunch already too! Argo likes to eat the ones that other animals have started on too. He gets SO excited.

    Allie’s last blog post.. The Great Wolf Debate

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  10. KitsapFG on June 11, 2009 at 12:10 am

    Yes, indeed we have strawberries. Two beds of them in fact and two half whiskey barrels full of them too. They are all Ozark Beauties and produce large sweet fruit. They are just starting to ripen up and we have not had our first one yet – but it will be very soon. Your’s look very good Susy and the plants look very healthy.

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    • Susy on June 11, 2009 at 10:13 am

      My plants are: Sparkle, Earliglow and Allstar. I’m also growing some Yellow wonder from seed (they’re a yellow heirloom strawberry). I may try a few different kinds in the future.

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  11. Andres on June 11, 2009 at 8:46 am

    Your strawberries look so good. So the entire two 4’x10′ are full of strawberries? Wow, about how many plants fit into there? Any idea? I really want to grow strawberries, but have not done so yet, hopefully in the near future. We have had to get by with picking from a local farm, but being further south than you, that was about a month ago.

    Andres’s last blog post.. Around the Garden

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    • Susy on June 11, 2009 at 10:12 am

      Yes, the entire beds are filled with strawberries. I bought 75 plants last year and I put one plant in each square foot of space with a few empty ones left over. I also had about 5-10 plants that died, but they filled in later in the summer with runners.

      This summer we’re hoping to get some of the runners these plants put off and we’re going to move them to an empty hillside as groundcover. Then in a few years when these plants have exhausted themselves, we’ll already have a productive strawberry bed to take their place.

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  12. Carolyn on June 11, 2009 at 11:07 am

    Yum! I only planted about a dozen plants this year. I didn’t know that you were supposed to pinch off the blooms the first year…We’ve been eating them!

    Carolyn’s last blog post.. Where do I put that compost?

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    • Susy on June 11, 2009 at 11:26 am

      My mom’s doing that as well.

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  13. detoxdietlady on October 3, 2009 at 10:52 am

    every food that we eat should come from Organic Farming. i really get scared about those toxins coming from chemical fertilizers and chemical pesticides. I only eat foods which are certified that they are organically grown

    Reply to detoxdietlady's comment

  14. […] summer during these cold dark winter months. Our freezer is currently stocked full of blueberries, strawberries, blackberries and wild black raspberries. I decided that some blueberries would go perfectly with […]

    Reply to Blueberry Skillet Cake (or muffins) « Not Dabbling In Normal's comment


This is a daily journal of my efforts to cultivate a more simple life, through local eating, gardening and so many other things. We used to live in a small suburban neighborhood Ohio but moved to 153 acres in Liberty, Maine in 2012.

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