New strawberry plants can be planted in August as they set their flower buds in the autumn for next year’s crop.
Tidy up the plants and cut away any dead leaves. I said in an earlier blog I used a GridGrow instead of putting straw under the strawberry plants this year. I found it made for very low maintenance in comparison to other years (though I must say the straw looks so much nicer). Once the crop is finished rake away and cut out all dead leaves. Hoe out any weeds. Then rake the ground. Once this is done apply a light scatter of general purpose fertiliser. Short-stemmed new leaves will soon appear and be nicely set for the winter and for next year’s crop. If you use the GridGrow clear the ground of all weeds. Add compost to soil and apply the general purpose fertiliser. Then plant the plants through the holes
Strawberry plants will last several years but it is better to replace them after 2/3 years. This doesn’t need to cost anything as new plants can be made for runners.
Simply place the new growth at end of runner into a small pot of compost. Once it has taken root, cut the runner from the parent plant. The strawberry plant can be put in the ground once well rooted.
Be sure to put some strawberry plants in the greenhouse in large pots. This will prolong the fruiting time next year as these will fruit about a month earlier than those grown outdoors.
I read in an article by Alan Titchmarsh that thinking of buying a greenhouse on a warm August day was a most unlikely thought for most people. However he said any enthusiastic gardener should not put off getting one and that August is the time to get started so the greenhouse will be ready for next spring.
It was interesting to read what he thought were essentials when buying a greenhouse. The automatic roof windows, which open and close as the greenhouse gets hot or cold were his first choice. He also recommended louvres, as ventilation is very important in greenhouses. These are easier to install when putting up your greenhouse rather than installing later. Both roof windows and louvres are included in the price of all sizes of Landmark Greenhouses, as are the double staging, gutters and downpipes to harvest rainwater. These are often an additional cost with many greenhouse companies.
There are many decisions to be made. The first is where to position the greenhouse in the garden and what size to buy. Will you put in on a concrete base or grow direct into the soil. Will you run electricity to it? Water supply close to the greenhouse is essential. Both water and electricity can be piped underground from the house but the conduits should be fitted professionally. It is not necessary to have electricity, but it would be a luxury to be able to plug in a heated propagator or a heater.
The most important decision regarding position is that the greenhouse gets lots of light. Summer sun is needed if you intend to grow tomatoes and peppers. Measure up the site with pegs and string to give an idea of what suits your garden. When you have decided on the size, either a concrete/tiled floor, or a base, or a small wall for the greenhouse to sit on must to be built. Then delivery can be arranged. Landmark have all sizes of their range in stock in Dublin and can arrange for the greenhouse to be at your home immediately. However, with decisions and site preparation it will be almost autumn before greenhouse is up and ready.
Once it is installed you will be able to sow some flower seeds for next summer, lambs lettuce, parsley, coriander and primo carrots and overwinter spring onions, but most importantly it is ready when needed in early spring.
Newly erected Landmark Greenhouse by client in Enniscorthy County Wexford with great imagination.