1. Clear the beds: Remove any debris or dead leaves from the strawberry beds before the new growth starts.
2. Fertilize: Apply an organic fertilizer specifically designed for strawberries before new growth begins. This will help provide necessary nutrients for strong growth in the coming season.
3. Water: Strawberry plants need consistent moisture, especially during early season growth. Water deeply and frequently to keep the soil moist but not wet.
4. Mulch: Add a layer of organic mulch around the base of strawberry plants to help retain moisture and suppress weeds. Pine straw or shredded leaves work well.
5. Monitor for pests: Check plants regularly for pests such as aphids, spider mites, and slugs. Treat any infestations promptly to avoid damage to the plants.
6. Remove runners: Early in the season, it’s important to remove any runners (shoots) that emerge from the strawberry plant. These runners can divert energy from fruit production and should be clipped off at the base.
7. Prune: As strawberry plants begin to mature, prune off any dead or diseased foliage, as well as any weak or overcrowded growth. This will help the plant focus its energy on producing healthy fruit.