Best Plants for Greenhouses
Have you been considering starting or expanding a ?
Whether you are concerned about the continued financial crisis or simply want to eat better, greenhouse fruits and vegetables are a great addition to the dinner table. One particular summer favorite can be enjoyed earlier every year by growing strawberry plants in your greenhouse, the question is which plants are best suited to this growing environment.
There are three basic types of strawberry plant, summer fruiting, alpine and perpetual fruiting.
- All of the above can do well in a greenhouse, if all other conditions are met.
- One particular strawberry plant you may want to avoid is the musk, since it is more prone to mold damage and only produces small sparse fruit.
- In order to determine which plants are best, you should know what it takes to care for them and the potential reward for your efforts.
The first important thing to understand about strawberry plants are the required soil conditions.
- Strawberries a PH level between 5.3-6.5, which might require a trip to the nursery for the correct fertilizer and soil.
- These plants grow best in well-drained soil devoid of competition, so careful weeding is a must, and they prefer very sunny conditions, which is why they do well in a greenhouse setting.
- That being said the roots of your plants should be kept cool so mulch accordingly and keep it one inch below the plant head.
- Seedlings or runners do not fare well in very hot conditions so it is best to only place established plants with a well-developed root system in your greenhouse and trim runners as the appear.
- One problem many people have with strawberries is mold. Preventing your fruit from coming into contact with moist earth or growing medium, they will quickly mold and then rot on the vine. To combat this issue some people prefer to grow them on straw bales, or with a layer of straw over the soil. This is a good way to protect your berries from damage, just remember to remove the straw after the growing season. Replace the straw with mulch through the winter.
Now that you know a bit more about preparation for your strawberry plants it is time to get down to figuring out which ones are best for your greenhouse. Aside from the above-mentioned constraints, it truly is a matter of personal taste. Here are a few things to consider when making your choices.
If you are looking for a flavorful berry producer that will produce nearly year round with the correct greenhouse temperatures. According to Cornell University, this variety produces the most flavorful fruit of all greenhouse strawberry plants. Tristar plants do continually put off runners and daughter plants, which mean you, will want to keep up with pruning, or you will be overrun shortly!
One of the best strawberry plants for greenhouses, according to Cornell University, is the Jewel variety. These are early season or June bearing plants, which are compact plants that provide consistent high yields and fruits that are resistant to after harvest rot. Berries produced from Jewel plants are typically uniform wedge conic shaped fruits.
If you are planning to can or make preserves from your bounty, Earliglo strawberry plants remain an overall favorite. Fruit does tend to be a bit smaller than other varieties, however they are extremely sweet and often the standard used to compare other strawberry types. As an added bonus, these plants tend to be healthier and more disease resistant than other varieties. Earliglo plants remain a favorite among strawberry growers hands down.
For the berry farmer who wants large fruits and multiple harvests the Ozark Beauty plants are a great choice. These plants are considered ever bearing, which means you will receive at least two large harvests per year. Of course, these also produce runners so again a little extra care will be required in a greenhouse setting.
What are the best strawberry plants for greenhouse production?
The short answer would be a compact plant that is easily cared for, however in truth nearly any strawberry plant can be successful in your greenhouse and you want to consider your end purpose!
- Are you seeking a modest harvest for home use or considering a trip to the local Farmers Market?
- You want to consider quality, quantity and potential use for your berries. As well, as the work involved, when choosing the best strawberry plants for greenhouse growing.
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