Strawberries have a reputation for being water-loving plants. If you get your strawberries going, they’ll reward you with juicy red fruit. But the first few weeks of caring for your strawberry plants are critical. You need to make sure that the plants have the right conditions and activities from the start if you want to enjoy those fruits in about 4 months’ time! In this article, we explain how often you should water strawberries and other tips on growing them. Let’s take a look!
How Often Do You Water Strawberries?
Strawberries are actually quite drought-tolerant plants. As long as the soil is well-drained, and you make sure there’s no water sitting on the leaves, you can probably get away with watering them once a week. On the other hand, over-watering strawberries can cause a variety of fungal diseases like root rot, wilting, and leaf disease. It can also stunt your plants’ growth and cause smaller yields from your plants. So, it’s definitely worth keeping an eye on your plants and making sure they’re not drowning.
When To Water Strawberries?
- Strawberries are very easy to overwater. Before deciding how often to water strawberries, make sure the soil is dry.
- If the soil is wet, you’ve waited too long. If you’re using a soaker hose or drip irrigation system, you should turn it off when the ground is dry.
- If you’re watering by hand, you can normally tell when the soil is dry because it will start to crack on the surface. If the soil is too wet, the roots can’t breathe and they rot.
- If the soil is too dry, the plants suffer from stress. To avoid moisture-related problems, water strawberries when the soil is dry.
What Type Of Soil Does A Strawberry Need
- Strawberries grow best in soil that is slightly acidic, with a PH between 5.5–6.5. You can check the PH of your soil with a soil PH test kit.
- To check the acidity of your existing soil, you can contact your local agricultural extension office.
- They can recommend the best way to adjust the PH of your soil. If your soil isn’t acidic enough, you can add materials like garden lime, powdered sulfur, or wood ash to the soil to make it more acidic.
Tips For Successful Watering Of Strawberries
- Choose the right type of pot. You can grow strawberries in any type of pot, but there are a few types that are better than others for growing strawberries.
- Choose the right soil for strawberries. Nutrient-rich, sandy loam soil is best for strawberries.
- Choose the right pH balance for the soil. The ideal soil pH for growing strawberries is somewhere between 5.5 and 6.5.
- Position the pot in the sun. Make sure your strawberries are getting 6–8 hours of direct sunlight each day.
- Plant them in the right season. It’s best to plant strawberries in the spring or fall. You can also grow them indoors with a grow light.
How To Water Your Strawberry Plants?
Check the soil
Before watering, it’s important to make sure the soil around your strawberry plants is moist. You can check the soil moisture by pressing your finger into the soil at the roots. If the soil is dry, it will feel crumbly. If it’s moist, it will feel clumped together. You can also dig up a small amount of soil and inspect it. If it’s wet, you don’t need to water your strawberries. If it’s dry, it’s time to water. It’s important to check the soil before watering because too much water can be harmful to your plants. If the soil is too moist, the roots can rot. When growing strawberries, start off watering your plants deeply but infrequently. This will help the roots establish themselves properly before you need to water more frequently.
Use drip irrigation
If you live in an area with unreliable water, or you’re just looking for a more efficient way to water your strawberry plants, drip irrigation is a great option. Drip irrigation delivers water directly to the roots of your plants, where it’s needed most, and it reduces the amount of water lost to evaporation. This method also allows you to customize how much water each strawberry plant receives, which is especially helpful if you have different types of plants growing together. You can buy premade drip irrigation kits or make your own setup using flexible tubing, a few different types of emitters, and a water timer. If you have limited space, you may also be able to use a soaker hose. When growing strawberries with drip irrigation, water your plants deeply but infrequently.
Water using a hose
If you prefer to use a hose to water your strawberry plants, you’ll want to water them deeply but more frequently. When watering your plants with a hose, it’s important to make sure the water is running from the end of the hose. If it’s spurting out, it’s going to be too forceful for your plants. A nice, gentle trickle will allow you to water your plants deeply but more frequently. You should water your plants often enough that the soil is moist to a depth of at least 6 inches. You can water your strawberry plants any time they need it. You shouldn’t really need to worry about watering them on a schedule. As with any watering method, start off watering your plants deeply but infrequently, and then gradually increase how often you water them.
Rotate your plants
Strawberries are shallow-rooted plants. This means that they send their roots out in a wide circle around the plants, which often leads to the roots getting tangled. When the roots are tangled, they can’t get enough water or nutrients. To avoid this, you should rotate your strawberry plants every few years. Moving your plants to a new spot will help them untangle their roots, which will make them healthier and more productive. When you rotate your plants, make sure to use a spot that has good soil and is well-drained. You don’t want to put your plants in a spot with bad soil, and you definitely don’t want to put them in a spot that doesn’t drain well. You can also add plenty of organic matter to the soil to improve its quality.
Using a timer to water
While you don’t want to water your strawberry plants too often, you also don’t want to go without water for too long. Ideally, you should water your plants twice a week, and each time you should water them deeply. A great way to make sure you’re watering your strawberry plants as often as they need is to use a timer. A timer allows you to program your watering schedule so you don’t have to remember when and how often to water your plants. Plus, it’s an excellent way to save water. If you’re relying on your memory, you’re much more likely to overwater your plants. A timer ensures that your plants only get the water they need when they need it.
When Should You Fertilize Strawberries?
Strawberries are heavy feeders, so they’ll quickly deplete the soil of nutrients. You can fertilize strawberries once a month with a balanced fertilizer. If you want to fertilize your strawberries more often, you can try:
- Adding manure or compost to your soil – Using a ready-to-use fertilizer
- Using a fertilizer sprayer It’s important to note that if your soil is too rich in nutrients, you risk promoting diseases and pests.
Growing strawberries is easier than you might think. Strawberries are very forgiving, as long as you water them and fertilize them properly. You can also grow strawberries in pots, which is a great option if you don’t have a place to plant them in the ground. No matter which way you choose to grow strawberries, they’re sure to be a tasty and nutritious addition to any garden or backyard.