A gardener has some options as to how to grow their strawberry plants. Strawberries can be grown from seed, ordered as bare roots, or bought at a nursery as seedlings. Strawberry plants can also be started from runners from another part of the garden or a sharing friends garden.
In a study done by Nebraska University 13 different varieties of strawberries were grown including day-neutral and June-bearing types.
It took only 7 weeks from potting of dormant crowns for most cultivars to produce fruit.Strawberry Cultivar Trial
Dormant crowns is the same thing as bare root strawberries.
You can have a strawberry harvest from Ever-Bearing and Day-Neutral types of strawberries two months after planting them. It’s the same for June-Bearing types but these types typically produce a meager harvest during their first year of growth.
On the left is a healthy looking strawberry seedling and on the right is a strawberry plant just getting started from a runner.
Most seed distributors have a mix of strawberry seeds, bare root plants, and seedling plants for sale.
How Long Do Strawberries Take To Grow From Seed?
Strawberries grown from seed will take between 160-210 days to grow strawberries. It’s common for strawberry seeds to be started indoors. In the north where I live strawberries get started indoors around February and then transplanted outside in April or May.
Do Strawberry Plants Bare Fruit Their First Year?
June-Bearing strawberry plants may produce a small amount of strawberries in their first year but it’s common gardening practice to forgo the small harvest and pinch off the flowers that do appear so that the strawberry plants will focus on root growth and sending out runners to establish “daughter” strawberry plants. In this way come next spring the strawberry plants will produce a good harvest.
Ever-Bearing and Day-Neutral strawberry types are similar to each other and both should give a small/medium size harvest in their first year of growth in the late summer/early fall.
Ever-Bearing plants are known to produce strawberries in two batches, once in the spring and again in the late summer/early fall while Day-Neutral strawberries are known to produce small amounts steadily through the growing season.
In truth though neither of these strawberry types do well in the heat and both will die back and produce little/none in the middle of a hot summer.
If it’s a mild summer Ever-Bearing types might produce strawberries in 3 batches and Day-Neutrals may produce well all through the growing season.
You might also like “Are Strawberries Annuals or Perennials?“.
How Long Does It Take Bare Root Strawberries To Grow?
Bare root strawberries will start to develop new leaf growth 2-3 weeks after being planted. If you have planted June-Bearing strawberries you’ll need to wait until the following spring for a good harvest. If you’ve planted Ever-Bearing or Day-Neutral strawberry plants you should get a small/medium harvest in the late summer/early fall when temperatures start to cool some.
Make sure to plant them at the correct depth, with the crown half way above the soil and half below. Scroll to page 8 of this PDF to see illustrations that show the correct planting depth.
How Long Does It Take Strawberries To Sprout?
Strawberry seeds are trickier to sprout than most garden plants. Seeds should be stratified and require some light to grow. After seeds are stratified they should germinate in a normal time range of 5-21 days.
Strawberry seeds from some distributors have already been stratified and are ready for planting. If not, seeds should be stratified by placing in the refrigerator for 3-4 weeks.
Strawberry seeds need some light to germinate so do not cover them or cover them very lightly with a sprinkling of soil.
Strawberry seeds will germinate with soil temperatures of 50 degrees or above but will germinate optimally and quickest with a soil temperature around 70 degrees.
This is the point of heating mats. To increase soil temperatures and speed up seed germination times.
How Long After Flowering Are Strawberries Ready To Pick?
Strawberries will be ripe and ready to pick about 4 weeks after they begin to flower. Strawberry plants will flower at different times depending on the type of strawberry plant being grown, what region it is being grown in, and whether it was started from seed, root, or starter plant.
In this strawberry grow trial titled “EFFECT OF PLANTING DENSITY AND GROWING MEDIA ON GROWTH AND YIELD OF STRAWBERRY” strawberries are grown with different plant spacings and in different grow mediums.
It’s a little difficult to read, not the best layed out paper, but there is some interesting information that was collected and it is displayed well in the tables.
One of the interesting categories that were tracked is how long until the first flowers appeared on the plants. The average time of the six “treatments”, the different spacings and growing mediums, for the first flower to appear was 112 days.
You might also be interested in “When To Plant Strawberries“.