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Strawberries in a strawberry pot - what about winter?

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by Stormysgrandma on June 07, 2006 01:05 AM
Hi all! My hubby bought me two strawberry pots this spring. I planted impatiens in one, and I'm considering strawberries for the other one. I'm in Indiana, so we have pretty cold winters. Most plants die in the winter if they are planted in pots. Is there a way to keep strawberries alive throughout the winter?

I thought maybe I could take them inside, but I think they have to go dormant in the winter months.

Any advice would be greatly appreciated.

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by Patty S on June 07, 2006 10:15 AM
Stormy, strawberries are pretty hardy, but they don't do well if they go into a real deep freeze. Regardless, Strawberries in a "normal" garden bed like to be covered over with mulch of some type to protect them during the winter, & they emerge the following spring as though nothing happened. They do appreciate the rest period when the weather cools off.

I planted strawberry in towers last year for the first time, & last winter I sort of panicked when I heard that we were getting down to freezing temps (unusual here), & I brought the towers inside & put them in the bath tub. (That was the only place where I knew I could keep them watered.) Well, I discovered that doing something like that was a mistake, & I actually knew better than to try something so dumb, as I've had strawberry beds for a number of years!

Indoors, they started growing again & got pretty leggy as they tried to reach for light. I realized that their "normal" winters were spent all covered up with no light & cold temps, so I wasn't doing them any favors! I put them back outside & covered them up with a old blankets & just left them alone. They came back this spring, just like they should have.

In Montana, where the ground freezes several inches down, I didn't lose strawberries over the winter when I piled lots of leaves on the beds. (But I never had them in towers or pots, which I'm sure, would have been a different story.) If you get real hard freezes there, my guess is that you could cover the pots with blankets, & maybe even drag them into your garden shed or some place where they'll be protected. Make sure the soil is moist (not soaking wet) when you set them up for hibernation, & they should be fine.

Good luck... I know you'll enjoy having strawberry pots!

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