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The Promise of Deliciousness

May 14th, 2011

Shipping is a terrible thing to do to vegetables.
They probably get jet-lagged, just like people.

~Elizabeth Berry

Our strawberry bed was one of the first things we installed here as part of our edible garden. My parents always grew strawberries when I was growing up. You simply can’t get any better than freshly picked strawberries! I can’t eat the ones from the store, they’re giant, hollow and taste kind of watery compared to the small red jewels that we harvest from our patch.

While I was out working earlier this week I noticed that our strawberry patch is blooming profusely. I see a delicious red berry where every bloom is. Looks like we’ll be able to enjoy a lot of strawberry shortcake in a month or so. Since we only freeze a few and eat the majority of them fresh, we indulge while they’re in season.

If you have room, I’d definitely recommend putting in a strawberry patch. We’re currently adding a few everbearing varieties so we can have a few berries all summer long for salads. I also need to thin out our patch as they have sprawled into the walkways around the raised beds. I’ll be noting which plants produce the best berries and we’ll take those out and start a new patch in the new garden area.

Do you have a strawberry patch in your garden?

20 Comments to “The Promise of Deliciousness”
  1. farmgal on May 14, 2011 at 6:59 am

    I can’t wait for the flowers to start on my own strawberry rows, it will be a while yet, I love strawberries, we currently have 3 twenty foot rows that are 3 feet across each, and we had enough babies that we will be doing one more row yet this spring, We eat as many as we would like and I use the rest in different canning products.

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    • farmgal on May 14, 2011 at 7:02 am

      opps, hit send to early, I have a patch of wild strawberries on the front lawn that dear hubby picks, it takes a long time but the flavor is amazing, and I have both june bearing and everbearing in my garden rows, its wonderful to get to go out and pick fresh strawberries in sept.

      Reply to farmgal's comment

  2. Kathi on May 14, 2011 at 7:31 am

    I putt in a patch about 3 years ago. Last year it was prolific, but starting to get overgrown and matted. After the season, I drastically thinned them. I thought this year I would have a terrible yeild but so far I am getting a good amoount of flowers. I often hear that a patch only lasts 3 or so years, then you need too start over. I can’t really see myself doing that, but figure if I pull some of the older plants out, and let the babies grow it’s kind of rejuvinating itself. Gardening is all a big experiment to me anyway.

    Reply to Kathi's comment

  3. Melissa on May 14, 2011 at 7:32 am

    I put in a strawberry patch last year and the rewards this spring have been wonderful! They’ve been going since about mid- April down here in the South. I made strawberry jam 2 weeks ago! Soooo Good! Must make more!

    Reply to Melissa's comment

  4. Nebraska Dave on May 14, 2011 at 8:17 am

    Susy, strawberries are on the list for sometime down the road. My grandson loves strawberries but he’s with you on those steroidal over sized tasteless store strawberries. I don’t have a lot of room for plants like strawberries so I am devising a plan to grow them vertically …. I hope. It seems I always have to throw a challenge into every thing that I do.

    Have a great strawberry day.

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  5. Beegirl on May 14, 2011 at 8:37 am

    We just put one in this year! I can’t wait fir the berries!

    Reply to Beegirl's comment

  6. Daedre Craig on May 14, 2011 at 9:23 am

    I’m growing strawberries in the garden for the first time in my life this year. I have the cultivar ‘Honeoye’, which is supposed to be very popular. Ironically, I’m also growing Honeoye strawberries in my graduate research project. I’m learning a lot about their photoperiod and temperature requirements (as well as propagation).

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  7. Joshua on May 14, 2011 at 12:08 pm

    This is the 2nd year for my strawberrry bed. Last year, they were busy spreading, and only produced berries in dribs and drabs. In the time I spent weeding the bed, I could eat nearly every ripe berry there was (and I did). This year, they have really come on strong. We have harvested about 20 quarts so far. We’re working through the 2nd half of that, which we just harvested yesterday. We’ve made 7 pints of jam already and are considering what to do with the rest. Maybe pie.

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  8. Stephanie on May 14, 2011 at 1:31 pm

    I planted some strawberries last spring and we got a few berries, but unfortunately the deer came ate ate them to nubs. I was hoping they would come back this spring, but they didn’t :( I’m hesitant to plant more until we can find a way to keep the deer out.

    Reply to Stephanie's comment

  9. MAYBELLINE on May 14, 2011 at 1:37 pm

    Strawberries are booming this season.
    Don’t you cringe when you bite into one that just isn’t right?
    It all goes away when you have a beautiful, juicy, lush berry.
    What fertilizer do you use?

    Reply to MAYBELLINE's comment

    • Susy on May 15, 2011 at 12:16 am

      I add some bat guano in the fall for all of my fruiting plants.

      Reply to Susy's comment

  10. Andrea Bruce-Niederer on May 14, 2011 at 3:47 pm

    Yes, I love strawberries! I have a new patch of the day-nuetral type called ‘Tri-Star.’ Also have some everbearing ones in raised beds. Last year the slugs got at least half of my crop but I’m going to watch the moisture content of the soil better this year. I read if you have too much moisture in the soil it attracts slugs which are not usually a problem here in the Inter-mountain West. I love your photos and writing. I just wrote a post about working in the berry patches too. My blog is

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  11. KimH on May 14, 2011 at 6:51 pm

    No strawberries for me, except for the wild ones that grow like weeds around here.. They’re tasteless though, unfortunately. I was wanting to try to make some jam but they didnt even have one iota of strawberry flavor. :(

    Reply to KimH's comment

    • Susy on May 15, 2011 at 9:28 am

      We have some wild strawberries but they’re tasty little things. We don’t pick them though, the dog eats them all as she’s out and about!

      Reply to Susy's comment

  12. goatpod2 on May 14, 2011 at 9:19 pm

    No strawberry patches here since my Mom is allergic to strawberries.


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  13. donna rae on May 14, 2011 at 11:05 pm

    We have a few plants in strawberry jars since our space is limited… our little “homestead” is actually 1/5 acre in a suburban neighborhood! We do take advantage of all the locally grown and organic berries, though.

    I love the quote at the top of your post. It reminds me of how I often describe myself during travel, “very perishable, like an overripe strawberry”!

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  14. RM on May 15, 2011 at 12:38 am

    I would love to know more about how you planted your strawberry patch. I am in the process of planting strawberries (got the Mara De Bois variety from Burpee this year), and am trying to decide whether to grow rows, or just plant them a few feet from each other in a dispersed pattern. Originally, I wanted to use them as groundcover, but read that they will not produce much fruit if they are too densely packed. Any advice would be much appreciated!

    Reply to RM's comment

    • Susy on May 15, 2011 at 9:28 am

      I planted mine in a square foot gardening method. I divided my raised bed into 1 ft squares and planted on strawberry plant in the middle of each square. You will want to refresh your strawberry bed every few years. Keep the runners cut off and then allow select ones to grow and remove the mother plants. This way you’ll always have fresh young plants that produce well.

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      • RM on May 16, 2011 at 2:09 pm

        thank you! I will do the same.

        to RM's comment

  15. DJK on May 18, 2011 at 11:34 pm

    I have one volunteer plant. It would be nice to get five to ten berries from it though. Not sure where the seed came from, however; maybe the birds or probably the compost…

    Reply to DJK'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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