It’s OK to remove old strawberry plants from your garden!
Every plant has its lifespan, even perennials only produce so long.
Strawberries are considered a biannual. Some plants will produce for three years while others may produce for 7 years. "June Bearing" berries are typically in this category. That means, if not properly managed the berries will reduce in size and production. It's all about management and knowing when to replant. Strawberry patches require fertilization, plant renovation, and covering with straw in Kentucky winters.
Renovating is a three step process that includes: mowing down the foliage directly after the harvest season; fertilization after harvest; and cultivating out the original plants to make space for the new growth (runners/new shoots/new plants).
THIS IS SO HARD for gardeners but overcrowded plants won't produce as long.
Fertilizers are needed for continued plant health especially ones containing Phosphorus and Potassium. The nutrients help tremendously with flowering and fruiting.
"Day Neutral and Ever-Bearing" berries typically won't be productive enough to fuss with renovation.
My strawberry patch is in its 4th year and is a mix of June Bearers and Ever Bearers. We had a HUGE harvest last year but saw a significant reduction in berry size. I renovated them properly the first and second years then missed my window the 3rd year. I've decided it's time for them to go!
Removing them will open up new space for summer flowers summer and fall garlic. Cut flowers attract beneficial insects and enhance beauty. Garlic makes me happy all winter long!
Our Strawberry Crowns have arrived and we'll post a planting video soon. If you'd like us to deliver a Strawberry Bed Kit to your home, please see the link below.