How does your garden grow? Strawberries

On the last day of April I wrote about my mini greenhouse makeover and today I wanted to share with you the progress of our plants. You may remember that we used an old piece of industrial venting that we found in a skip to make a DIY strawberry planter. We lined it with cardboard, filled it with compost and popped some tiny strawberry plants in the holes. Well, nearly two months on I’m happy to report that the strawberry plants have taken root and are becoming bushier by the day.

We’ve even already been able to harvest a batch of strawberries to eat, and there are even more on the way! Having never successfully grown more than one strawberry on a plant before I am really chuffed with the progress of my plants.

Unfortunately the first crop of strawberries were eaten by birds who hopped into the greenhouse when it the door was open during the day and enjoyed a cheeky berry feast. So we’ve since been keeping the door closed (it’s not been too hot at the moment) and only opening it when we are in the garden and able to police the bird situation!

I think that the planter has worked well; the compost didn’t spill out of the holes as I’d expected and each of the strawberry plants seems to be happy with the amount of space they have. The planter can be filled with water and keeps the moisture in at the roots of the plants so they never seem to dry out like the tomato plants in the greenhouse.

Speaking of tomatoes, something unusual has happened. Last year the greenhouse was heaving with too-big tomato plants full of fruit, yet this year we’ve had two very successful plants on the left and two that are hardly growing at all on the right. I would have definitely blamed the new ‘beach hut’ shed but this happened before we’d even put up the shed beside the greenhouse. Weird, huh?

Anyway, I’m celebrating the success of my strawberry crop with a glass of my favourite fruit beer and am wondering whether I’ll be able to grow enough strawberries to brew up my own strawberry beer? Wait and see!

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Cassie Fairy
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