Double the Delight! Why choose between growing flowers or fruit? This wonderful plant is both highly ornamental and it produces tasty fruit on ever-bearing plants. The semi-double flowers are gorgeous in their own right and lip-smacking sweet strawberry together all summer. It's a little like having your cake and eating it too. Planting in a container will show off the fruit to best effect, but it can also be grown in gardens. Short runners can develop over time, which may add a trailing element to the plant. These runners can be trimmed back, if you prefer to do so or can be left as is. The 12-16" tall, mounding plants are just the right size for your patio pots or hanging baskets. They will flower and produce fruit the season they are planted if you buy plants or start seeds indoors, which means the plant can be grown as an annual. However, they are also quite hardy and will be perennial in zones 4-9.
BEST TO START INDOORS Seed Prep - Strawberry seeds will germinate better if they are chilled in your freezer or refrigerator for 3-4 weeks prior to planting.
Planting - Once seeds have received their chill period, start them indoors 8 weeks before the last frost in your area. The seeds should germinate in about 2-3 weeks, but could take a little longer. Strawberry seeds are tiny and should be sown on the soil surface.
GROWING NOTES Thinning - If the seedlings are crowded, you may want to thin them to allow more robust growth of the remaining seedlings.
Transplant - Plant the seedlings outdoors about 3 weeks after the threat of frost is past. If you live where frost isn't a concern, that will be about 11 weeks after planting the seeds. Plant 3 or more seedlings per container, depending on container size. In the landscape, plants should be spaced 18-24" apart. Rows should be about 36" apart.
HARVEST AND USE Grow your strawberries in at least 6 hours of direct sun a day. More sun is desirable and will help produce a bumper crop of fruit.
The plants should be kept evenly moist and fed regularly for the best results.