When To Plant Strawberries In Tennessee

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Strawberries are a popular fruit that can be eaten alone or in various recipes and desserts. If you live in The Volunteer State and have a green thumb, you may wonder when to plant strawberries in Tennessee.

The best time to plant these delicious fruits is in early Spring, between mid-March and early April, giving the strawberries time to establish their root systems before the heat of Summer arrives.

When To Plant Strawberries In Tennessee

However, if you’re new to planting fruit, you may wonder how suitable the climate is for planting strawberries. When is the best time of year to do it? 

Understanding the best planting time, appropriate strawberry varieties, and proper care techniques is critical for strawberry cultivation success.

In this article, we’ll look at when to plant strawberries in Tennessee, the best strawberry varieties for the area, how to care for strawberries, and when it’s too late to plant. 

When Is The Best Time For Planting Strawberries In Tennessee?

Tennessee’s climate is generally described as having hot summers and mild winters. Early spring is the best time to plant strawberries in this area.

Plant them as soon as the soil is workable, which is usually between mid-March and early April. Strawberry planting in early spring allows them to establish strong root systems before the intense heat of summer arrives.

It is critical to consider the specific microclimate of your Tennessee area, as temperatures and frost dates may vary slightly.

Consultation with local agricultural extension services or experienced gardeners in your area can provide useful information about the best time to plant strawberries in your area.

What Are The Best Strawberries To Grow In Tennessee?

When choosing strawberry varieties for Tennessee, ensure they are well-adapted to the region’s climate and growing conditions. Tennessee gardeners’ favorite plants include:

1. Chandler

Chandler strawberry is a high-yielding variety with large, flavorful berries. It thrives in the climate of Tennessee and is known for its disease resistance.

2. Allstar

Another popular variety that produces firm, sweet berries is Allstar. It is disease-resistant and can grow in a variety of environments.

3. Sweet Charlie

Sweet Charlie is an early-season variety with large, aromatic berries. It is highly productive and well-suited to the climate of Tennessee.

4. Sequoia

Sequoia is a variety well-known for its flavor. It is a mid-season variety that produces large, sweet berries and does well in Tennessee.

Note: Remember to select varieties appropriate for your USDA hardiness zone and follow the planting instructions provided by the supplier.

When To Plant Strawberries In Tennessee

How Do You Take Care Of Strawberries In Tennessee?

Strawberry plants in Tennessee require special care to grow and develop successfully. Here are some essential tips:

Soil Preparation

Ensure your soil is well-drained, fertile, and high in organic matter like Ribbon Organics OMRI Certified Organic Compost before planting. Compost or well-rotted manure should be worked into the soil to improve its structure and fertility.

Planting

Make a hole large enough to accommodate the strawberry plant’s roots. Plants should be spaced about 12-18 inches apart, with rows about 3 feet apart.

Set the plant in the hole at the same depth it was growing in the nursery container, with the crown level with the soil surface.

Watering

Strawberries, especially during the fruiting season, require consistent moisture. Water the plants regularly, aiming for an inch of water per week. Overwatering can cause rot and disease problems, so be cautious.

Mulching

Mulch around the plants with straw or pine needles to help retain soil moisture, suppress weed growth, and protect the berries from direct soil contact.

Wood Smith USA 100% Natural Cedar Shavings is a great and versatile option for mulching.

Fertilizing

Follow the manufacturer’s instructions when applying a balanced, slow-release fertilizer like the popular Espoma Organic Berry-Tone Natural & Organic Fertilizer.

*For detailed and tested fertilizer recommendations, please see our article Best Organic Fertilizers for Strawberries: Boost Your Crop Yield Naturally.

Strawberry plants should be fertilized in early spring and again after the fruit has been harvested

Pest And Disease Management

Watch for common pests such as slugs, snails, and aphids. Inspect your plants regularly and take the necessary pest-control measures.

In addition, keep an eye out for common strawberry diseases like gray mold (Botrytis fruit rot) and leaf spots. Infected plants should be removed and destroyed if disease symptoms are detected as soon as possible to prevent further spread.

When Is Too Late To Grow Strawberries In Tennessee?

Regarding strawberry cultivation, timing is everything, and planting too late in the season can result in lower yields or even failure. It is generally recommended in Tennessee to avoid planting strawberries after early May

Planting too late exposes the plants to the summer’s scorching heat, causing stress and impeding proper growth. It is critical that the strawberry plants have enough time to establish before the extreme temperatures arrive.

Frequently Asked Questions

How Long Does It Take For Strawberries To Bear Fruit?

You should know that strawberries planted in the early spring will start to produce fruit in about 4-6 weeks, but this depends on the variety you’ve chosen, the growing conditions, and how well you have cared for them.

How Long Until I Have To Replace My Strawberry Plants?

You should generally replace your plants after around 3-4 years once their productivity declines. After this, it’s a good idea for you to introduce new plants! 

Are There Any Diseases Or Pests That Are Specific To Tennessee Strawberry Plants?

While strawberries can be susceptible to various diseases and pests, some common ones in Tennessee include gray mold (Botrytis fruit rot), angular leaf spots, and spider mites.

Bonide Captain Jack’s Copper Fungicide effectively controls and prevents a wide range of plant diseases and is approved for organic gardening.

It’s important to monitor your plants regularly for any signs of disease or infestation and take appropriate measures, such as removing infected plant parts or applying organic or chemical controls if necessary.

Final Thoughts 

Growing strawberries in Tennessee can be a rewarding experience, yielding a plentiful harvest of delicious homegrown berries.

You can increase your chances of success by planting at the right time, selecting suitable varieties, and providing proper care.

We hope this article has provided you with all the information you were looking for, and best of luck! 

Further Recommendations:

Video: Strawberry Season in Tennessee

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