Strawberries...best to grow in containers or ground?

carolbarrelApril 28, 2013

Hi ya'll...

I bought one of those "towers" to grow strawberries in a tiered container, but since it's a perennial I'm wondering if it can survive bound up in a container. The container came with a growing medium that is guaranteed to support good strawberry plant growth and fruit production.

My regular garden soil is a sandy loam, no earthworms so I'm not sure how healthy the ground soil is. I do use compost and manure when gardening and it works well.

Also I'm worried about rabbits and other critters that might be attracted to strawberries when they are fully fruiting...if they're planted in the ground. Maybe a container high up on a tall table is best to keep critters at bay (of course with birds...all bets are off!)

Just wondering if any of you live in coastal or Santee-Copper SC...and if you grow strawberries could you share some tips with this newbie?

Thanks in advance!

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sara82lee(8a - SE Va)

So many people say strawberries grow well in containers, but I guess I just don't get it. To me it seems opposite of what you want - strawberries spread through runners and they don't really produce much the first year. I tried a few in baskets once and was really disappointed. The ones that I planted in the ground at the same time grew so much bigger/better... And they were still there, ready to go again the next spring. I don't think the shrimpy ones in the baskets even made it through the winter stashed in the detached garage. I'm in coastal VA, though - maybe they'd do better overwinter in SC in a container. All that to say, I think strawberries in containers doesn't work nearly as well as in the ground. My soil is a bit on the sandy side, at least where the berries are, and I haven't noticed any problems with that.

My strawberries are kind of ground cover among other plants, so they don't really take up extra space. The rabbits don't seem to care about them, but the squirrels seemed to like them. I put a rubber snake in there and they actually started staying away! I just moved it around every day or two. Maybe I have dumb squirrels.

This post was edited by sara82lee on Wed, May 1, 13 at 22:01

    Bookmark   May 1, 2013 at 9:57PM
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zzackey(8b GA)

I grow mine in deep window boxes and they do well. Only thing is you need to cut off the runners and repot them. I hope to get them all in the ground this fall. They dry out too quickly now.

    Bookmark   August 20, 2013 at 6:31PM
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quirkpod(7 Lewisville NC)

I switched to pots when the fruit was eaten by ants, slugs, chipmunks. Now they are on a well guarded patio. Also the fruit liked to rot if it touched the soil.

    Bookmark   January 10, 2014 at 3:31PM
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jcalhoun(8b Mobile County AL)

I have been using strawberries as groundcover since most groundcovers don't like full sun. They look great as a flowering plant and the fruits are awesome. The birds are the biggest critter problem but I could but a cage over them during the fruiting season.

And yes, the fruits shouldn't touch the soil.

    Bookmark   January 26, 2014 at 10:03AM
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