How to grow early strawberries

Do it:

Jan, Feb, Mar, Apr

Takes just:

20 minutes

At its best:

May, Jun

Strawberry plants will be in growth to flower and fruit four to six weeks ahead of outdoor plants if potted up now and brought into a cool greenhouse or conservatory. Keep them well lit, ventilated and watered to prevent the plants becoming leggy and drawn.

You will need

  • 3 strawberry plants (pot-grown or lifted from the garden)
  • Large pot or hanging basket
  • Multi-purpose compost

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Plant two or three strawberry plants in a hanging basket or large pot of multi-purpose compost. Keep them well watered and ventilate the greenhouse on hot days.

As strawberries develop, cut off any long runners that grow as these will divert energy from the crop.

Check pot-grown plants carefully as the fruit develops for signs of slug damage. And it's worth netting greenhouse doors and vents to stop the birds stealing the fruit as it ripens.

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In very hot weather, it's worth covering your strawberry plants under glass with a piece of horticultural fleece. This will stop the leaves, flowers and fruit becoming scorched.

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