If you’re lucky enough to have a backyard garden patch, you’ve likely considered growing strawberries in it before.
This deliciously sweet fruit is surprisingly easy to grow, as long as you can get the timing and conditions just right, so knowing the best seasons is key.
When are strawberries in season? There are a few different types of strawberries that can be grown at different times, with popular varieties having harvest dates of June or April, depending on the climate.
Alternatively, everbearing strawberries are those that can produce fruit in early summer and again a couple of months later.
This luscious fruit is one of the easiest things to grow in your garden but one that delivers plenty of juicy rewards.
With our help in timing your strawberry crops just right, you’ll yield as many strawberries as possible as long as you go with their favored seasons.
The Strawberry Varieties and Their Seasons
Strawberries aren’t a fruit confined to just one month of the year, so if you plan it right you can enjoy them over numerous months.
To determine the right strawberry season for those you plan on plating, you need to know the three different types of strawberries. Here’s a little more about them and how they produce fruit in the right conditions.
If you want a strawberry that doesn’t care about day length, a day-neutral is best. They are capable of producing fruit continuously until winter starts and the first frost arrives, and they need temperatures of between 35 and 85 degrees Fahrenheit to thrive, so it’s quite versatile.
However, what they do produce is a lot less than other strawberry varieties, so it tends to even out.
This name can be a little confusing as it seems to imply these strawberries are produced year-round when they’re actually just twice or three times a year.
An everbearing strawberry variety will produce its main crop in spring, then another in early summer and again in late summer.
These are the most common type of strawberries grown by a home gardener in a veggie patch. As their name implies, a June-bearing strawberry will produce buds in autumn and then bears its fruit in June over a period of around three weeks.
Once this is over, you’ll need to wait another year for more fruit to be harvested. In some cases, the strawberries may bear fruit a little earlier, but you need to live in a warmer area.
Planting Strawberries Off-Season
If you plan on growing strawberries outside of their regular season, using a hydroponic setup at home might be best.
There are loads of available growing systems that require no soil to grow and you can keep them indoors and safe from pests, frost, and soil-borne diseases, so they’re minimal fuss.
The beauty of such a setup is that you can plant the seeds at any time and they can bear fruit whenever as well.
As long as you can keep conditions ideal for them, you’ll be rewarded with a continuous harvest of strawberries, as long as you’ve planted an everbearing variety that’s capable of growing year-round.
If you prefer to stick to June bearing strawberries, it’s not possible to plant these out of season. However, one of the benefits that this variety offers is that they continue to put in work even during winter and in harsh conditions.
Compared to a day-neutral strawberry, this variety will use all of its energy growing a strong root system and spreading throughout the garden bed so that when the time is right, it can start flowering and producing large fruit again.
There’s no need to water them or protect them, as they’re capable of doing this on their own, even during unforgiving winters.
When Should I Plant Strawberries?
The most important part of the strawberry growing process is planting the seeds, and the timing of this will determine just how successful the harvest eventually is.
Your climate will determine the best conditions for growing strawberries, but as a guide, these are the recommended months.
- Colder climates: All winter or early spring
- Temperature climates: Late fall or all winter
- Tropical climates: Early fall
For the most accurate advice on the growing season, consult the seed packet that you’re growing them from or the person who supplied you with the seeds.
There might be specific information about the strawberry variety that can give you a clue about when it should be planted for the best results.
10 Tips for Growing Strawberries
Strawberries have a good reputation for being easy to grow, but if you want to ensure the ripest, juiciest fruit production, there are things you can do to help.
Check out these suggestions for optimal strawberry production and how to make the most of the growing season.
- These plants need some space in order to grow effectively, so make sure there are around 12 inches surrounding them and the next one. When the runners start to grow wildly out of the plants, trim them back and use them to propagate new strawberry plants.
- Strawberries love sunlight so find somewhere to plant them that gets as much sun as possible. The more UV rays they can soak up, the bigger and juicer the fruit they produce will be.
- If you’re looking for a cheap mulch to put around strawberries, using a straw is ideal. As their name implies, straw provides great weed coverage and will keep the soil moist, just as this fruit plant loves.
- Check the pH levels of the soil they’re living in, aiming for slightly acidic soil. A recommended guide is between 6.0 and 6.5 so that your strawberries will grow as healthily as possible.
- Strawberries are vulnerable to attack from diseases, so you have to be cautious about the seeds you use. If it’s your first time growing them, choose seed stock from a farmer with a good reputation to reduce the chance they’ll get infected.
- When you’re watering strawberries, avoid watering the leaves of the plant and only focus on the soil. The leaves can hold onto moisture and rot which will affect the entire plant.
- Be mindful of what you’re planting around the strawberry patch, as they can interfere with fruit production. Avoid planting anything like tomatoes, capsicums, potatoes, or eggplants as they can be especially harmful.
- When it comes time to harvest the fruit, use a pair of sharp scissors to trim them, and do not pull on the plant. Choose an afternoon where it’s warm and sunny as this will guarantee a better-tasting fruit.
- After you’ve harvested the fruit, prune the tree to tidy it up and avoid the runners from spreading too far. You should trim it so far down that there’s not much left on top of the soil as this will help it prepare for winter.
- A strawberry plant needs to be replaced every few years otherwise the quality of the fruit will decline. To counteract this, some people replace a third of their strawberry plants each growing season so there’s always a fresh supply.
A Strawberry for Every Season
Although you can’t grow strawberries year-round, there are different varieties you can plant that will give you access to the fruit for as long as possible.
With careful planning and the right timing, you’ll be enjoying sweet, delicious strawberries that have been grown in your very own backyard.
A home gardener can grow all kinds of fruits and vegetables with minimal skills, giving you access to all kinds of delicacies to enjoy.
If you’ve been thinking about growing a vegetable patch of your own, we’ve got some commonly asked questions about them that can help you get started.
What Vegetables Grow in Winter?
If you live in a warmer region where winter isn’t too severe, you can still grow things like beetroot, carrots, leeks, spinach, and lettuce.
Sowing and planting new crops of vegetables isn’t recommended if the nighttime temperatures reach around 50 degrees Fahrenheit as they will fail to flourish.
Does a Vegetable Patch Need Full Sun?
The contents of a vegetable patch will dictate what type of sunlight is required to help them grow, with most needing between full sun and partial shade setup.
If you have only a shaded area, some vegetables will still grow effectively, including kale, collard greens, broccoli, cabbage, and certain herbs.
What is the Easiest Fruit to Grow?
A backyard gardener will find it easiest to grow strawberries, blackberries, and raspberries, and do so with minimal gardening skills.
However, it takes time for these plants to become established so you can wait between one and three years for them to start developing edible fruit.