strawberries not sweet - what did I do wrong?

ffreidlJune 7, 2011

Wow - really disappointed with my strawberries this year. They look great, but they're surprisingly bland - not sweet and not much flavor overall.

I have a mix of Tristar - which I have grown previously in pots and loved the flavor of - and Earliglo, which I had heard was a flavorful variety. I think the Tristar is probably way outnumbered by the Earliglo which put out a lot of runners last year, so most of what I'm tasting may be Earliglo, but I did look around in the bed for what I thought was Tristar and so far, everything seems to be equally bland & not sweet.

We had a lot of rain when the fruit was setting, but since then, not much, so I don't think it's a case of too much water.

Anyone else ever have this problem? Is it just that some years they're sweet and some years not? Or do I need to change varieties/ change soil, add amendments, etc?

The foliage looks good and there's a lot of fruit. Just not very tasty.... They're in raised beds - this is their 2nd year - didn't get much from them last year.

Thanks for any help!

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Interestingly, the critters aren't eating them either. I have a few Mara des bois in a different bed and they've been nibbled at, but this bed is pretty much untouched. Hmm....

    Bookmark   June 7, 2011 at 2:31PM
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alan haigh

You need to post your region when asking for this kind of advice. Too much water certainly leads to bland strawberries but the conditions you describe are what we have here in southeastern NY.

One of my customers had bland strawberries and didn't know the variety, but they were everbearing so I'm guessing one of the day neutral clones.

Mine are earli glow, I think, and they've got normal good flavor.

    Bookmark   June 8, 2011 at 4:48AM
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Hi Harvestman,
Yep - I'm in Southeastern NY.

I think the strawberries might be getting slightly better tasting, but it could just be my imagination. I haven't tried today's harvest yet. I'm wondering what other reasons, besides rain, there might be for fruit that doesn't have as much sweetness as it should.

    Bookmark   June 8, 2011 at 7:58PM
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How much sun are your berries getting?

    Bookmark   June 9, 2011 at 2:35PM
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I've noticed that if I pick my strawberries in the morning or after a good sized rain that they tasted watered down and bland. I started picking them after the evening heat sat on them for an hour or two and they tasted a lot stronger. You might try that, but if that does not help then I would get more of the Tristar and see if the Earliglo is your flavor problem.

    Bookmark   June 10, 2011 at 5:09PM
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alan haigh

There's nothing wrong with the flavor of Earliglo by my experience and reading. It is a highly rated variety for flavor, I believe more so than Tristar, who's primary virtue is the long harvest season.

    Bookmark   June 10, 2011 at 7:33PM
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