First Strawberries!

There was just one ripe on Tuesday, so we cut it in quarters to allow each of us a taste. It wasn’t as sweet as I was expecting, but the strawberry flavor was just MORE. Wow!

Today, there were seven ready to be picked.

We haven’t yet eaten them. I think we should wait a day or two, because the berries that are just starting to blush may be ready by then, and we could each have more than a mouthful. Will we hold out?

I don’t know if you can really see it in the photos above, but I devised an unusual mulch to keep the berries off the ground. All the videos of strawberry gardening that I’ve watched portray straw under the berries. But I don’t have easy access to straw right now. What did I use instead?

Well, every spring the maples in our back yard shed their seed pods all over. Our back deck fills up with them. Eventually the seed pods go away—I’m not sure where—and all that remains are the stems that once connected the pods to the tree. I usually sweep them off the deck into the the nandina beds below, where the stems enrich the soil.

This time I collected them all and saved them.

Whenever the strawberries grow heavy enough to bend their stems down to the dirt, I go get a handful of maple stems and place them under the berries. So far it’s working. The strawberries are pristine!

I’ll add a note to this post once we eat the strawberries to tell you how long we waited and how they tasted!

For more about our garden, see:
Container Gardening at Casa Ney-Grimm