louielam
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Strawberries in containers during the winter (US zone 6-7)

Hi everybody!! I bought a bag of strawberries from Home XXpot earlier this year. The plants didn't provide many fruits (perhaps that's the 1st year) but they're strong. Starting from June they produced a lot of runners and I planted them in another container. The runners are now as stong as their parents.

I live in Long Island which the temperature zone is 6-7. Winter is coming. Should I just leave the parents and offsprings on the deck during the winter, or should I move them indoor?

The pack says it's quinalt (I think it should be quinault.)

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applestar
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I think containers on deck would freeze solid during the winter, not to mention get freeze-dried, and the roots won't survive. Once the leaves die down from the frost, I imagine it would be best to put the containers in a sheltered location where they would occasionally get watered naturally, will NOT sit soaking in melt-off or wet, and is sufficiently protected. Perhaps UNDER the deck or against the foundation of the house (South or West exposure?), covered in leaves, straw, and/or mulch. Another option is to bury the containers to their rims.

Here in Zone 6b, I mulch the strawberries in planted in the ground with fall leaves and straw, about 4~6" thick, after the leaves are dead or the ground freezes. If they are still pretty thick by early March, I start removing the excess mulch.

I have never successfully overwintered live strawberry plants indoors, but if you mean to bring them inside after they have gone dormant, I've heard but have not tried keeping them in places like unheated garage or porch. You'll have to water them occasionally then, and put them back outside... probably around mid~late-March.

louielam
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applestar wrote:I think containers on deck would freeze solid during the winter, not to mention get freeze-dried, and the roots won't survive. Once the leaves die down from the frost, I imagine it would be best to put the containers in a sheltered location where they would occasionally get watered naturally, ....
Thanks applestar!!

This is my first year to spend the winter in N. America so I don't know what to do with my perennials.

Actually I rent this apartment. I can use the frontyard but it's the lawn and the backyard belongs to another family. So I don't think I can put them in the ground with mulch. I'll move them indoor once the temperature drops below freezing point.

Once again, thanks for your advice.

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lorax
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I've successfully brought live strawberries in to overwinter them as houseplants, in Zone 2a. The trick is to get them indoors when the temperature registers around 40, put them on an inside wall that still gets good light but no cold from a window, and to water less frequently than you'd normally think.

Where are you from originally, Louie, if you don't mind my asking?

louielam
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lorax wrote:I've successfully brought live strawberries in to overwinter them as houseplants, in Zone 2a. The trick is to get them indoors when the temperature registers around 40, put them on an inside wall that still gets good light but no cold from a window, and to water less frequently than you'd normally think.

Where are you from originally, Louie, if you don't mind my asking?
Thanks lorax!! I've heard that if leaving strawberries to the freezing temperature for the winter, they'll produce more fruits the next growing season. But I know if the temperature is too low, container plants won't survivie 'cos the roots would be freeze dried. I didn't know where to draw the line.

I'm originally from Hong Kong. A sub-tropical region where I didn't need to do anything to my perennials for the winter.

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lorax
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That's probably true, but I've never tried it since I used to live in a zone where the cold would kill the plants regardless of how much mulch I put down. In Zone 6-7, you're probably OK to mulch, but like Applestar, I'd be leery of it since container plants freeze much faster than in-ground ones do.

louielam
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Right. It's better be save than sorry.

My mother (she moved to NY sooner than I do) has a pot of dianthus for years. She just leaves it outside for the winter. The whole container is completely freeze dried during the season but it grows back strong and flowers for over 6 months every year. Hardy plant.

DeborahL
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Quinalts will fruit on the runners. With Quinalts you don't need to plant them.
God must think highly of animals - He created them before creating us !

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