I may have killed my strawberries in my towers.

andyinnycMay 28, 2012

While inspecting the towers I realized that everything was droopy. How could that be, I wondered? Everything is on an Orbit dual output timer.

Yes, the timer had failed. I hope I caught it in time, but of course it occurred just as my berries were starting to turn red.

I guess my hubris is being punished - the deer just found my 3-1 cheery, too.

Andrew

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howelbama(7 NJ)

If they are just droopy, and not dried and brown, they should bounce back. Your harvest may not be that great this season, but they will be fine for next year. Strawberries are pretty hardy and can take quite a but of neglect. If it is their first year, your harvest probably would not have been that great anyway, but don't give up on them.

    Bookmark   May 28, 2012 at 12:12PM
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andyinnyc

Oh, I'm far too stupid to give up.

For the cherries and apple tree, they are in 3x3 foot 'boxes' (no bottom) to help them get started in my otherwise clay-heavy soil.

I'm going to run to Home Depot and pick up their 7' deer net/fencing and 3/4" 10' PVC pipe. I figure I'll put a 'post' in each of the corners and circle the trees with the netting. It should last until they grow more and I can bury several feet of the PVC inside the box to keep it rigid and upright.

Any better idea on the trees? I've already (too late) sprayed them with Deer Off.

Other than 'I'm too stupid to quit', is there any good reason why I keep trying to beat Mother Nature? I mean I NEVER get any of the blueberries from my plants - the chipmunks eat them all and thumb their noses at me, after all.

Andrew

    Bookmark   May 29, 2012 at 12:46PM
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howelbama(7 NJ)

Did your strawberry towers recover?

    Bookmark   May 30, 2012 at 12:24AM
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andyinnyc

Well, they certainly have not recovered. Dead? I don't know yet.

It is certainly grim - some of the plants are showing brown and none of the lower levels (where the recent rains wouldn't have penetrated during my failure-induced drought) are in any way perking up.

The before pictures compared to the current state is really sad.

There's always next year. :(

Andrew

    Bookmark   May 30, 2012 at 12:00PM
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andyinnyc

An update to my strawberries.

I killed them. So, being the diligent consumer I ordered some new ones from Nourse and they will arrive next week.

One of the things I'm thinking of trying is to put screen door screening inside the tower and slice a hole in it to insert the strawberries.

To reaquaint everyone with my science experiment, I have 6' sections of PVC pipe with an 8" diameter. The pipe has holes drilled in a honeycomb - each pipe has 100 or so strawberry holes. The pipe is filled with 1:1:1 mix (crushed granite, Turface and pine bark fines). The mix is large enough to easily go out the holes before the strawberry roots lock everything in place.

Last time I covered the outside of the pipe with newspaper and cut holes for planting in the PVC hole. This worked reasonably well.

I'm thinking that the screening will easily hold everything in place for much longer. It will eventually rust, but I'm not sure that's really a big issue.

Anyone have any thoughts?

Andrew

    Bookmark   March 30, 2014 at 3:10PM
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rebuilder(7a-7b Snellville, GA)

Just a quick thought....
Door/window screen is usually coated aluminum or fiberglass and not metal. The cheaper fiberglass should last a very long time. The aluminum may oxidize and break down over a long period of time(years?) because of the constant moisture and fertilizer salts.

    Bookmark   April 4, 2014 at 6:16AM
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andyinnyc

After posting, I checked, and the screening I have is fiberglass.

Given the blurry picture above and my description, does anyone think this is a bad idea?

Andrew

    Bookmark   April 4, 2014 at 9:40AM
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