6 steps to success with Strawberries from our Marlows gardener....
I've constructed a strawberry bed using spare decking planks which are ideal as they will support netting when the fruit need protecting. Our neighbours at Howarth timber supply decking boards which are treated for a longer life. Here's how to do it...
1. Choose healthy looking young plants
2. Cut your boards to the required size allowing planting gaps of approx. 25 - 30cm. Nail the boards together with corner blocks.
3. Add compost and fertiliser (Growmore or Fish Blood & Bone) to the ground, cultivate with a fork and rake.
4. Cover with weed control fabric and weigh this down with medium size stones or similar.
5. Cut crosses slightly larger than the pots. Remove plants from their pots and carefully insert them using a hand trowel.
6. Water in the plants
The fabric will keep weeds at bay, preserve moisture in the ground, and keep the fruits cleaner. You may be lucky enough to get some fruit this summer, but the first year is really about getting the plants established for bumper crops from year two onwards. During the summer give them a boost with tomato fertiliser.
Ian Shilling, Garden Managerback to blog
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