Do you want to know how to grow strawberries hydroponically or in the soil? Strawberries are very well suited and relatively easy to grow in hydroponics and offer a quick return on investment for commercial growers.
Strawberries plant spread across the ground and small plants that can live more than 2 years and blooms in the spring season.
If you are a commercial grower you need to select-
- The Correct Cultivar,
- Planting System,
- Hydroponic media are other important aspects of cultivation,
How to Grow Strawberries Hydroponically Indoors/Outdoors-
- If you want to plant immediately as a summer fruiting crop then procure your plant in spring they should have already initiated flower buds.
- If you have day-neutral cultivars and you want out of season production procure your plants in late spring and let them chill for 3-4 months in the cooling system then plant your heated greenhouse in autumn for winter production.
- Make sure you have good ventilation around the foliage and a proper drainage system.
- They are mainly self-pollinated but you can introduce bumble bee 40-50 bumblebees can pollinate 4000 strawberry plants.
- You have to give a good water supply with a low level of salt in it.
- A lower temp. is required to break the seed dormancy period and higher temp. in the vegetative stage.
- You have to increase potassium for large berry size if plants are under low light conditions.
- If you plant early (late autumn) you can get up to double the crop in their first season compared with late plantings (late winter)
The Strawberry plant’s short and thick stem called as “crown” upper end has growing point and the lower end forms roots.
Conditions to Grow Strawberries Hydroponically-
- You can cut down any old dead leaves and roots dip in fungicide before planting or storing.
- Plant the crown in the media.
- Make sure your plants receive 8 or more hours of proper sunlight.
- While Fruiting 18°C to 25°C is best for growth.
- Check the leaf growth it should occur quickly followed by the first flower truss in 3-4weeks once you have planted.
- Allow flying insects into your greenhouse for pollination.
- You should reduce the humidity by using a dehumidifier and increase light intensity to increase photosynthesis.
- Runners often root themselves nearby and remain attached to the mother plant. This variety of strawberries produce more fruit if you allow not more than 3 of the runners each summer can make a yield. (But note that some variety doesn’t have runners!)
How many days from pollination to fruiting?
- Once pollinated you can expect the white stage is usually reached in about 21 days & the red stage by 30 to 40days
- Your strawberry is successfully ready to harvest 4-5 days after the red stage.
Temperature Requirements to Grow Strawberries Hydroponically-
- The ideal temp. to maintain for good vegetative growth should be 15°C to 18°C.
- While Fruiting 18°C to 25°C is best for your strawberries.
pH Requirements to Grow Strawberries Hydroponically-
- Strawberry requires a pH of 6.0 because higher than that causes iron deficiency.
Special Nutrients to Grow Strawberries Hydroponically-
- Boron Magnesium & Sulphur are important secondary nutrients for strawberry
- The deficiency of boron causes poor pollination & as usual deficiency of Potassium or magnesium causes leaf burns.
- The deficiency of potassium also makes flavourless fruit.
- Better keep the Phosphorus level higher than usual and chlorine level minimum.
Best suited growing methods to Grow Strawberries Hydroponically-
- The trough filled with clay balls or Rockwool is mainly seen in the strawberry plantation method.
- You can use the NFT channel width of 15cm good.
- You can also use a hanging bag system.
- Vertical pipes Flood-and drain with clay balls.
- Size of truss used for growing 10cm x 15cm.
Planting space to Grow Strawberries Hydroponically-
- You can take 35-40 cm intervals for both indoor and outdoors.
Measures to avoid damage to Grow Strawberries Hydroponically-
- Strawberry plant hates wet and humid conditions make sure you keep in check
- You have to keep an eye on the crown of the strawberry because excess water would lead to crown rot.
- Fungal diseases are likely to occur if your system has a poor drainage system,
- Temp. above 30° C in the root zone can lead to poor plant production.
- I recommend you to replant every 3 years even if a plant looks healthy.
- Beware of Slugs they often chew holes in ripen strawberries if you have done mulching in soil.
- Harvest your strawberries on a daily basis once they turn red!
- You can pick when the fruit has a 65-75% pinkish appearance.
- Harvest your ripe strawberries in the cool morning and store them immediately in a refrigerated environment.
Post harvesting management for strawberries-
- You have to store them in a cool place(10-15°C).
Nutrient requirement to Grow Strawberries Hydroponically-
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Do know how to make a hydroponic nutrient solution recipe? Check out the link
Hanging bag method to Grow Strawberries Hydroponically-
You can also grow strawberries in hanging bags you will appreciate the aesthetic results which is less expensive!
You can buy those “black coloured” bags whose dimensions are usually 90-120cm long and 15cm in diameter.
The bag can be hung from any possible objects but make sure you follow all of its needs. Strawberry is planted in holes sideways and nutrients can be given from the top of the bag and strawberry.
Pruning Strawberry Plant-
- Trim the roots to around 8 cm when planting through runners.
- While planting runners you should remove the flowers to avoid premature fruit formation.
- Trim old dead leaves and roots and dip in a fungicide before planting.
- You can remove runners i.e retain the main plant or don’t allow more than 3 daughter plants.
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