Strawberry Season Off To A Good Start

Though the rain we saw earlier this month delayed the harvest of several crops, conditions improved enough in most areas that strawberry planting went ahead as scheduled.  Here is a field that was planted about two weeks ago.

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Growers have irrigated overhead since planting and are now letting the drip systems take over.  We’ve had a lot of nice weather lately and the transplants seem to be adjusting well so far.  This field looks great with the exception of a few plants that were transplanted a little too deep.  This pretty commonly occurs with inexperienced workers or those that get in a hurry while transplanting.

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The plant above was transplanted too deep and the growing point has been buried.  This will end up causing the plant to expend a large amount of energy trying to push above the ground when it should be using that energy to grow a root system and develop crowns.  This plant will be stunted and its yield will be negatively impacted.  The photo below shows a plant that was transplanted with the growing point above the ground.  That’s what we want to see.

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This time of year, while temperatures are still warm, growers should be scouting weekly for spidermites and disease.  For help doing so, get in touch with the Clemson Horticulture agent in your area:

  • Coastal:  Zack Snipes 843-722-5940 (O)
  • Pee Dee:  Tony Melton 843-661-4800 (O) and Justin Ballew 843-423-8285 (O)
  • Midlands:  Powell Smith 803-359-8515 (O)
  • Upstate:  Andy Rollins 864-596-2993 (O)

For more information on strawberry production, take a look at the IPM and production guides on the Southern Region Small Fruit Consortium website.

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