How you can Develop Strawberries in Vertical Containers

You don’t want an enormous house to develop strawberries. You possibly can harvest ample yields from even the smallest patio! These beginner-friendly fruits readily produce in vertical containers, offering candy, juicy berries all summer season lengthy. Vertical rising is especially advantageous for this sun-loving plant as a result of you’ll be able to guarantee correct drainage, numerous airflow, and clear fruit.

From hanging baskets to small pots to raised beds, strawberries will develop in practically any container. However a Greenstalk vertical planter is the easiest way to maximise yields in a small house. This tower-growing technique stacks a bunch of crops on prime of one another, permitting the berries to dangle off the aspect to reap as wanted.

Let’s dig into the whole lot you have to find out about rising strawberries vertically!

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GreenStalk 7 Tier Vertical Planter

GreenStalk 7 Tier Vertical Planter

Can You Develop Strawberries in a Greenstalk?

Growing strawberries in a Greenstalk planter creates a vertical, tower-like display with cascading green foliage and vibrant red berries peeking out from each tier.
The Greenstalk tower is good for rising clear, accessible strawberries.

A Greenstalk vertical plant tower is the right place to develop strawberries. The 7-10 inch deep planting pockets present ample house for shallow-rooted strawberries. You possibly can simply fill the vertical tower with a high quality natural potting combine that’s wealthy in compost and splendid for enhancing drainage. 

The stacked container design permits berries to hold off the aspect of the container, maintaining them clear, disease-free, and accessible to reap. It additionally retains the berries safer from pests like capsule bugs, slugs, and earwigs. 

Crops rising in a Greenstalk are straightforward to prune and water. The strawberry runners will fly off to the aspect with out anyplace to root. This makes sucker elimination tremendous easy and fast. 

Should you don’t have a lot house in your backyard otherwise you’ve struggled with tangled messes of strawberry crops, attempt rising vertically to maximise your yields with much less effort.

9 Steps to Develop Ample Strawberries in Vertical Containers

One of the best time to plant strawberries in vertical containers is in early spring when the chance of frost has handed. Nonetheless, you can even begin later in the summertime in gentle climates.

Going vertical is much like rising within the floor however requires some particular modifications to guarantee your crops produce in a smaller house. So long as you might have the best container, varieties, and upkeep, berries may very well be in your desk in just some months!

Select Compact Day-Impartial Varieties

Day-neutral strawberries are compact plants with green foliage that produce small to medium-sized, bright red berries.
Day-neutral strawberries are perfect for steady yields in vertical containers.

Not all strawberries are created equal! Choosing the proper cultivar ensures that your vertical containers will yield prolifically. However selecting the flawed cultivar might go away you with an overgrown mess that doesn’t yield for an additional yr.

There are three principal kinds of strawberries:

Produce a bulk of berries directly in a single midsummer flush

Two to a few smaller harvests all through the season so long as it’s 45-80°F (7-27°C)

Reliably produces berries constantly no matter season or temperature

Day-neutral varieties are the most effective for vertical containers and residential gardeners on the whole. They fruit whatever the day size or temperature. Higher but, they produce berries inside three months of planting. ‘Seascape’ and ‘Albion’ are two of the most effective varieties when it comes to taste, productiveness, and compact progress. 

So long as you keep on prime of sucker elimination (which we’ll clarify under), these shrubby crops can thrive in a GreenStalk planter.

Fill With High quality Soil

Close-up of a gardener filling the first level of a vertical strawberry growing container with fresh, quality soil.
Put together your GreenStalk with wealthy, well-draining soil for strawberries.

To organize for planting, you have to first fill your container with soil. Not like hydroponic rising, vertical gardening nonetheless makes use of actual soil to help the plant roots. The trick is that this soil is elevated in particular person planting holes or pockets.

One main good thing about this rising fashion is the lowered soil necessities. A big raised mattress will be costly to fill, however if you’re utilizing a 5-Tier GreenStalk, you solely want about 5 cubic toes (40 gallons) of potting soil. A 7-Tier GreenStalk requires 5.5 cubic toes (42 gallons) of soil.

One of the best soil for strawberries is wealthy in compost and natural matter. It ought to have loads of drainage supplies like perlite or vermiculite. You can even add peat moss for moisture retention. A beneficiant dose of compost ensures you don’t must fertilize the crops. Some potting mixes are labeled particularly for strawberries, however any normal backyard mix will suffice.

Plant Naked-root Strawberries

Naked-root strawberries are strawberry crowns that appear like bizarre nubs with alien hairs. Though they seem nearly lifeless, these spindly brown crowns are literally dormant strawberry crops. Dormant crops are cheaper and simpler to ship and retailer.

They normally arrive with little to no inexperienced leafy progress and the occasional tannish-brown quick twigs on the prime. The lengthy hairs are the roots. Within the heart is the crown. It’s essential to know the anatomy of the strawberry crown!

Strawberry Crown Anatomy

Close-up of a gardener showing strawberry bare root seedling which consists of a small, dormant plant with a central crown and a cluster of roots.
Plant strawberry crowns midway for optimum progress and harvest.

Have a look at your bare-root strawberries and discover any indicators of recent progress. The little inexperienced leaves emerge from the highest of the crown. Discover how the crown is brownish and semi-woody, then it provides technique to the lengthy roots. That is the place all of the magic occurs! It’s essential to be sure that the strawberry crown is planted not more than midway submerged within the soil.

By no means plant your strawberry crowns any deeper than midway! The crowns simply rot within the soil, which suggests no berry harvests. Nonetheless, you have to additionally keep away from planting too shallowly. If any roots are uncovered above the soil, they’ll dry out and die.

How you can Plant

Close-up of a gardener's hands planting strawberry bare root seedling into soil in a vertical container in a sunny garden.
Plant naked root crowns straight down close to container edges for progress.

Use a hori hori knife or planting trowel to make deep holes in every planting pocket. As you plunge the hori hori into the soil, shift the soil to the aspect and decrease the naked root crown in. The roots ought to level straight down. There isn’t any must “fan” them out to the aspect. 

As soon as the roots are lowered straight into the soil, maintain the crown with one hand and use your different hand to backfill. Convey the soil as much as the bottom of the naked root plant, absolutely protecting the roots. Hold the higher half of the crown, twigs, and tiny new progress above the soil floor. Use your arms to press the inward and down, securing the plant’s upright place. 

Do not forget that the roots are utterly naked, in order that they want loads of root-to-soil contact to assist them begin rising once more. It is usually vital that the crown is anchored within the soil so it doesn’t float upward or get displaced if you water. Slight soil compression is good!

In most vertical containers, you have to plant the crowns close to the periphery to make sure that the crops cascade over the aspect as they develop. Hold the crowns near the sting so the foliage will overhang, however the roots can develop inward. Solely plant one crown per planting pocket, or go away at the least six inches of house between every plant.

Keep away from These Errors

Close-up of a gardener pressing the soil around a freshly transplanted strawberry bare root seedling in a container.
Double-check planting particulars to make sure profitable strawberry progress.

Should you mess up your strawberry planting, you might not discover out till it’s too late. You’ll want to double-check each crown earlier than shifting ahead. Avoiding widespread strawberry-growing errors will forestall crop failure and prevent some huge cash.

Ask your self:

  • Did I bury the crown? The central “nub” ought to be at the least midway above the soil.
  • Is the soil hugging the crown and roots? Compress the soil near the plant to safe it.
  • Are the roots uncovered? The tannish-brown roots ought to be absolutely buried.
  • Are the crops rising close to the sting? You need the strawberries to cascade off the aspect.

Fill your whole planting tiers with soil and bare-root strawberries earlier than persevering with to the meeting section.

Professional Tip: When you have further naked root crowns after planting, use these as your “strawberry insurance coverage.” Plant the leftover naked roots in a big pot stuffed with soil. Depart them to root and develop leaves so you might have replacements if any of the crops in your GreenStalk die.

You possibly can even use these leftovers to propagate your individual strawberry naked roots for subsequent season! All you have to do is go away the suckers to root and develop, then dig them up on the finish of the season. Prune again the leaves, wrap them in a moist towel, and allow them to go dormant in your fridge.

Naked Roots vs. Seedling Plugs

strawberries seedling plugs
For simpler planting, think about using strawberry seedling plugs.

Planting is probably the most finicky a part of the method, so it is rather vital to plant your naked root crops correctly. Should you don’t really feel able to study the anatomy of a strawberry crown, it might be simpler (however costlier) to supply strawberry seedling plugs. 

Seedlings come from the nursery already rooted in cell trays like normal vegetable begins. It’s possible you’ll discover much less varietal choice if you buy seedlings in comparison with naked roots. Nonetheless, they arrive with full leafy progress and robust root balls, making them simpler to transplant and barely faster to yield.

Water Generously

Close-up of a gardener watering a freshly planted strawberry seedling in a container using a hose with a spray nozzle.
Hold newly planted naked roots constantly moist for finest progress.

Newly planted naked roots want a constant provide of water. Give them a beneficiant drink after planting and preserve constant moisture. It’s finest to examine the tower each couple of days. So long as the soil doesn’t get too dry, you’ll be able to count on inexperienced new progress inside two to a few weeks

Assemble Your GreenStalk or Vertical Tower

The gardener assembles GreenStalk by placing a second layer of containers on top of the first, containing fresh soil and young strawberry seedlings.
Maximize berry yields with a compact, environment friendly vertical planter.

A big 7-tier vertical planter can maintain as much as 42 strawberry crops, which might yield dozens of berries per plant all through the season. Amazingly, this vertical container solely has a footprint of two sq. toes, and it’s roughly 4 toes tall. Whether or not you select this model or construct your individual vertical rising system, you might be ensured the best yields per sq. foot of some other berry system. For comparability, in-ground strawberries are normally spaced six to eight inches aside.

To assemble the GreenStalk, start by situating the underside tier on a rolling base or a sunny space of your backyard. The rolling base makes it straightforward to maneuver the planter round and spin it round to make sure even solar publicity. Alternatively, you’ll be able to create a DIY plant tower with PVC pipe or different plastic supplies.

After the primary tier, place the water diverter within the heart of the container. Place the following tier on prime and repeat the method till the entire tiers are stacked collectively. Discover how the plant pockets are organized upward in a zig-zag sample. The very prime of the planter is open to permit for straightforward watering

Place and Rotate the Planter

A gardener rotates a tall vertical green planter with freshly transplanted strawberry seedlings in a sunny garden.
Rotate your planter to make sure even daylight for all crops.

Place your planter in a vivid space that receives six to eight hours of direct solar per day. Nonetheless, be aware of this one disadvantage to rising vertically: The solar solely hits one aspect of the vertical planter at a time. One aspect of the planter is partially shaded by the tall construction, which might trigger uneven progress for a few of your berry crops.

Fortunately, the GreenStalk Vertical Planter Spinning Base makes it straightforward to rotate the planter. It’s finest to provide the vertical planter a few one-half flip each couple of days to make sure the crops have even entry to daylight. Should you don’t have the spinning base, you’ll be able to modify your planter with castor wheels or one other DIY moveable platform.

Prune Off Runners and Early Flowers

Close-up of a strawberry plant featuring trifoliate green leaves with serrated edges, red, juicy fruits and long, thin runners hanging from a vertical green container.
Recurrently prune runners to take care of optimum berry manufacturing.

Runners, often known as suckers or stolons, are the lengthy aspect shoots that strawberries ship out to supply new crops. Eradicating them is essential for fulfillment in a vertical container. Happily, it’s a lot simpler to prune berry crops which are rising vertically as a result of the shoots are very apparent and accessible.

Strawberries naturally need to develop as a tangled groundcover. The crops ship out lengthy runners or suckers that pull power away from fruit manufacturing. If the runners are left in place, they’ll develop into fully new crops. 

How you can Prune Vertical Strawberries

Close-up of a gardener's hands pruning a strawberry runner using red garden pruners.
Trim runners promptly to take care of concentrated berry progress.

In comparison with raised backyard beds, runner rooting may be very unlikely in a vertical setting for the reason that runners hover within the air. Nonetheless, the plant will attempt to ship a variety of power to develop new leaves on the tip of every runner. It’s finest to prune them off as quickly as you discover them. The method is tremendous fast and simple!

The lengthy stems of runners stand out distinctively from the leafy, bushy progress on the base of the plant. Every stem can have a distinctive bud or crown growing at its tip.

Use sharp, sanitized shears to snip off the runners on the base of every plant. Begin on one aspect of your planter and transfer round to examine that each plant has been pruned. 

Take away any lifeless leaves or stems to maintain the crops tidy and disease-free.

Take away Flowers for the First 4-6 Weeks

Close-up of a small strawberry flower being pruned using red garden pruning shears.
Take away early blossoms to spice up vegetative progress in strawberries.

It is usually very useful to take away the early flower blossoms in day-neutral and everbearing varieties. To start with levels of strawberry progress, you need your crops to channel their power into vegetative manufacturing. Do not forget that naked root crowns arrived with little to no leaf or root progress. You don’t need them to concentrate on fruit manufacturing too quickly, or it might hinder the general yields later within the season. 

Use your fingers or clippers to pluck off the primary few rounds of flowers. Take away the flowers from the bottom for the primary 4 to 6 weeks of progress. Don’t fear. This received’t have an effect on fruiting later within the season! As a substitute, flower elimination will encourage the crops to ship out numerous new inexperienced progress. As soon as there are many wholesome leaves, you’ll be able to enable the blossoms to remain in place and grow to be an abundance of fruit.

If you’re rising June-bearing varieties, some sources counsel eradicating all of the flowers for the primary yr of progress to stimulate enormous yields within the second yr. However most of us don’t need to wait a whole yr for strawberries! Day-neutrals are far more dependable and handy. 

Water Recurrently

Close-up of filling the water basin in a vertical planter with water using a hose with a spray nozzle.
Hold strawberries well-watered for wholesome progress and fruit manufacturing.

Strawberries are thirsty crops with pretty shallow roots. Vertical towers are superior for offering further drainage and heat. Nonetheless, this additionally signifies that the soil can dry out extra shortly. It is very important maintain the planter completely watered. The soil ought to be constantly moist all through the season, particularly within the early levels and through fruiting.

Use your finger to examine the soil moisture. It ought to really feel near the consistency of a wrung-out sponge or barely wetter. If no soil sticks to your pores and skin, it’s a signal that the crops want a drink. Strawberries might also wilt or flip yellow and brown in the event that they get dehydrated. A layer of straw mulch retains the soil shielded from drying UV rays.

To water a GreenStalk, use a hose or watering can to pour water from the highest of the planter. Fill the water basin each time it’s empty, and the soil feels dry. The cool factor about this method is that it has a built-in irrigation setup that evenly waters the entire tiers directly. The central channel ensures that water naturally filters by means of all the degrees of soil. Kevin explains extra about watering a GreenStalk on this video:

YouTube video

Different vertical containers might require watering particular person pockets to maintain the soil moist however by no means soggy.

Count on Berries in 6-8 Weeks

The strawberry plant has vibrant green, serrated leaves, produces bright red, juicy fruits with tiny seeds on the surface.
Harvest strawberries when absolutely crimson for finest taste and freshness.

Most strawberry varieties will begin yielding in as little as six weeks! The little inexperienced immature fruits will seem after the flowers are pollinated. In case your planter is positioned exterior within the backyard, bees will help do the legwork. If you’re rising on a patio or porch, it helps to plant different flowers and hanging baskets close by to draw extra bees.

When the berries begin turning crimson, wait a few days to reap. A absolutely crimson berry is completely ripe when it has a slight softness to the contact. You possibly can snip ripe berries from the bottom and pop them proper in your mouth or your harvest container. 

Keep away from leaving overripe or rotten berries to hold over the planter. They style nasty and may contribute to spreading illness.

Harvest Persistently

Close-up of a gardener's hands cutting ripe bright red heart-shaped strawberries using scissors.
Select day-neutral strawberries that yield berries all summer season with constant harvesting.

Day-neutral strawberries are superb as a result of they are going to constantly produce berries all summer season lengthy. Should you maintain harvesting ripe fruit, the crops will maintain cranking out new flowers till the climate will get too chilly. Strawberry crops solely cease producing in peak summer season within the hottest areas, however relaxation assured that they are going to resume flower manufacturing as soon as temperatures quiet down. 

Last Ideas

Strawberries are the right crop for rising vertically! Should you’ve grown these crops earlier than, you’ll discover that many of the care directions are the identical as potted or raised mattress strawberries. But when that is your first time, relaxation assured {that a} vertical tower makes tending strawberries tremendous straightforward

Keep in mind to fill the planter with high quality compost-rich soil, keep away from burying the crowns too deep, prune away runners, and water recurrently!

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