I'm a Southern California container gardener, and back in September I rooted runners in a pot that established very nicely. We are now at the beginning of February and the plants are producing bunches of strawberries anywhere from 5-7. While I'm happy to see this, I'm also concerned about the time of the year, and with it being "cold for California" at this time, how will it affect the flavor and size potentially growing in an "off-season"? Should I pinch the blooms off to allow the plant to mature more, and start fertilizing them in a few weeks with Spring coming? Also, is it typical for newly established runner plants to begin producing so many berries?
I’m not sure that this is the off season for southern CA. What tempertures are you getting?
I would let the berries ripen now. If the plants are ever bearing I would have kept them pinched off for a month or so to let the plants get bigger. I think it’s probably too late now.
If they are a June bearing variety, if you pinch them you won’t get any berries for a year.
Enjoy what you have! They do taste better in hot weather though.
Location: So. California Zone - 10a
posted 1 month ago
Thank you Kevin, the days are at 60 F, and the nights are around 40 F... colder than normal here, but not by a ton. I thought that the berries at this time might be less sweet than the summer ones. I will enjoy what is coming now however :)
They weren't very bright, but they were very, very big. Ad contrast:
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