Author: Michael - page 6

Strawberry Runners

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To prepare for strawberries give the soil a good work over with the addition of well-rotted cow manure and compost. Strawberries are one of the first fruits to blossom, the flowers and fruit are small they can easily be damaged by frost, so they must be planted in a frost free position. They are best planted in a warm north easterly position.

StrawberryRunners3Strawberries will not grow in waterlogged clay soils, so it is important that the soil is friable. To help break up heavy soil, mix in some gypsum and compost when you are first preparing the garden bed. Raise the soil in long mounds so that the strawberry plant’s root system is at least 4 to 6 inches above the natural ground level and 30cm apart.

Never plant in ground where Tomatoes or Potatoes were previously grown, because of the susceptibility of strawberries to Verticillium Wilt Disease, which is often carried over in the soil in which these crops were grown.

Water is the most important factor in growing large, juicy, sweet tasting strawberries.

Place a mulch of pea straw around the base of the strawberry plants to help keep the moisture in the ground, control the weeds and keep the fruit from laying directly on the soil.

Alternatively strawberry plants can be planted through black plastic. This reduces both weeds and watering while keeping the fruit clean. For small gardens strawberries can be grown in baskets and tubs. For best results use a premium potting mix and liquid feeding after plants are established. Strawberries need to be harvested regularly every 3-4 days as this enables new fruit to develop to full maturity. At the end of fruiting, trim of old leaves and clean up any mouldy fruit still attached.

 

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Strawberries

Please check on stock availability by calling us, emailing or visiting the Nursery as strawberries are seasonal

Strawberry3Alinta   is the first strawberry to fruit all year round – Traditional varieties only fruit for approximately five months. Bred in Australia, Alintia produces large, glossy berries with a fine flavour. Alintia is disease resistant and perfect for the home garden.  Season : All year round.

Amsterdam Roze is a sweet tasting, bi-conical, medium sized strawberry with attractive flowers in a stunning deep rose. The plants are compact and fruit throughout the entire summer period.

Hokowase is a sweet tasting, medium to large, wedge- shaped strawberry of Japanese   origin. Fruit are acid free and produced prolifically from early in the season. Season : Sept-Dec

Kamu A sweet flavoured, large, ruby red, wedge shaped strawberry. Season: September-December.

Kunowase A very sweet acid free Japanese variety.  Long and conical shaped fruit.  Season:  Dec/Jan

Red Gauntlet produces medium sized, sweet fruit on vigorous plants over a long period.

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The delicious strawberries are perfect for desserts, garnishes and mouth  watering snacks. Season: October-December.

Schizam is a flavoursome, large, deep red, conical shaped strawberry  September-December.

Strawberry Pink A high yielding variety that produces pretty pink flowers, followed by abundant medium sized, sweet fruit Season: September-December.
Sumo  produces high yields of super large, fragrant, delicious fruit. Virus indexed certified.  Season: September-December..

Sweetheart produces a profusion of small, coreless, delicious fruit over a long period. The sweet tasting strawberries are perfect for desserts, garnishes and mouth  watering snacks.Season: October-December.

Strawberry2Tioga produces abundant large, sweet fruit on vigorous plants over a long season. The delicious strawberries are perfect for desserts, garnishes and mouth  watering snacks. Season: September-December.

Torry  Produces large firm Wedge shaped Fruit, ideal for warmer areas.
Season : Sept-Dec

Tri Star is a sweet  tasting , delicious strawberry. The mouth  watering fruit are produced early and the plants continue to produce a high yield  throughout the season. . Season: September-December.

Zdana is a new strawberry producing abundant, exceptionally large fruit ..  The tasty berries have a sweet fragrance and a low acidity content. Season :  November-March.

Strawberry4Planting Guide: Select a sunny section ensuring that the soil is well drained and friable. For best results add animal manure and compost. Cultivate thoroughly. Plant 40cm apart. Water well until established. Alternatively strawberry plants can be planted through black plastic. This reduces both weeds and watering while keeping the fruit clean. For small gardens strawberries can be grown in baskets and tubs. For best results use a premium potting mix and liquid feeding after plants are established. Strawberries need to be harvested regularly every three or four days as this enables new fruit to develop to full maturity. At the end of fruiting, trim off old yellow leaves and clean up any mouldy fruit still attached.

Asparagus

asparagus4Asparagus officinalis is a perennial in the lily family and it lives for up to 30 years.

There are male and female Asparagus plants. The males have better quality spears and the females produce little red berries in autumn. The plants are not difficult to grow and will thrive under a variety of conditions. With proper care your asparagus bed should produce for 15 years or more.

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Asparagus are heavy feeders and require a deep, friable, rich soil that is well prepared before planting.If you have a heavy, clay soil, you’ll need to dig in plenty of gypsum and S.A Compost. Asparagus is very hungry and need plenty of organic matter such as cow manure, sheep manure, or such products as Rapid Raiser or Dynamic Lifter.

Asparagus can be grown by seed, or with seedlings. If you do grow them that way then after planting leave for about two or three years for a strong root system to develop. You must not pick any of the crop, just let it grow naturally.

The other way to grow them and usually the most popular method is buying a Asparagus crown, with its long fleshy roots. The crown of the Asparagus is where the spears will grow. Asparagus crowns are available for purchase and planting winter through to early spring starting from around May onwards.

asparagus1 To plant the crown you will need to dig hole or a trench if planting larger numbers. For each crown make a little mound, at the bottom of the hole/trench. Sit the roots of the crown nicely on top of the mound. Plant about 40cm apart. Water well once planted. Then in spring, little shoots will appear, at this time you can side and top dress with blood and bone. They can of course also been grown in very large pots .

When can I Harvest you ask? The crown and root system must be allowed to develop for one year before harvesting begins. Your may be tempted to do some harvesting the first year after planting, but bear in mind that removing spears will result in stress that will weaken your plants. Asparagus can be harvested for a 2- 3 week period the second year after planting. During the third, fourth and subsequent years, a full cutting season of 6 to 10 weeks are permissible. 


AsparagusIt is not advisable to continue cutting well-established asparagus plants after the end of December in any year. During the cutting period, the plant draws on food reserves stored in the root system during the previous growing season. The top-growth must be allowed to develop after December in order to replace the food stores in the fleshy roots. Cutting is best done with a sharp knife that is pushed into the ground so that it severs the spear about 2 1/2 cm (1 in.) below ground.

Apart from slugs and snails in spring asparagus has very few pests and diseases.

Once the plants are around the 3 to 4 years old you should find they go yellow in autumn and that’s the time to cut them back to ground level. The Asparagus bed will be bare until spring, and then those lovely spears of Asparagus will pop up back up in your garden.


Asparagus is high in potassium, great for fibre, low in salt, and a terrific, healthy vegetable to grow. There is nothing nicer than growing your own crop and taking it fresh to the table.