Last autumn we were given a tangled heap of strawberry runners by a relative, and happily potted up the strongest and stood them in their pots beside the greenhouse all winter, until we started our strawberry beds this spring and planted them out. They have grown happily and produced a modest crop for us this year, as expected.
In the past few weeks, the plants in the sunniest side of the bed have produced multiple runners again, so the weekend found me outside cutting them off (to preserve the strength of our still rather new plants) with a whole heap more runners to pot up!
Although it is preferable to pot up the runners while still attached to their parent plant, and give them time to establish roots in place before severing them, this isn’t very practical in our garden at the moment, and the plants that we were given last year didn’t seem to suffer from being cut from their parent before potting up, so I took my chances and cut all the runners from the patch. Some of the bigger plants had already developed good root systems.
The new plants are barely rested on the surface of the compost – I left an inch of the parent stem on one or both sides of the plants to help balance the plants on the compost, and also continue to provide nutrients for the first couple of days. Ten minutes later, fourteen new strawberry plants had been potted up ready to extend our strawberry bed next year.