Fairy candy - Strawberries

Strawberries are Fairy candy.  Or they could be Goddess fruit.  Definitely they are otherworldly good when you grow them yourself.  Much sweeter and juicier than store bought no matter if they are imported or grown locally.  I think it's because they are picked just a little too soon so they don't get damaged in transport.

This summer I got a bowlful of my own homegrown strawberries for the first time.  A whole bowlful!  I've had a crop of strawberries before, but it's always been one or two at a time, but not a full bowl of fully ripe strawberries, deliciously red and sweet and juicy.

I have two varieties of strawberries.  Some nameless one I bought in a garden center (they never seem to care about named varieties here) and a named variety that I grew from seed so the name was on the packet, but I have since forgotten it (but I think I have the empty packet somewhere).  The seeds came from Denmark and the flowers are pink and the fruit is large and dark and juicy.  This variety flowers well and doesn't try to send out runners like the other one does.  That is a good thing since that means it will concentrate on flowering and producing lots of fruit.  But I lost most of the plants last winter so I want to propagate the plant that I still have.  So I saved a few seeds to sow and am hoping to raise a few more plants.

Strawberry seeds need to get a period of cold in order to germinate, so I put them into the freezer after cleaning them well.  I only have 11 seeds, but I find that it never pays for me to sow too many seeds at a time.  It only results in way too many seedlings and consequently neglect and death.  I prefer to sow a few seeds and take very good care of them all.  Putting the seeds in the freezer somehow doesn't feel very kind, but if that's what they want...

I grow them in a long and narrow box that I built and hung up on a sheltered wall in the garden.  I used some left over timber that I had, screwed the whole thing together and hung it up with some chains.  I take the box down in autumn and keep it close to the house, right under the balcony so it doesn't get soaking wet in winter.  That way most of the plants survive until next spring.  I gave them very good soil this spring and added lots of well rotted horse manure as well as some water retaining gel.  I also mulched with the manure and I have fed them with comfrey fertilizer to boost flowering.  I seems to have paid off.

The nameless variety sends out a lot of runners and this is not good for fruit production but I can easily get lots more plants.  I almost can't keep up with sticking them in pots.  I'm growing them to give to my younger daughter (her apartment has a garden) so that she too can harvest her own next summer.  Her husband doesn't really like strawberries.  Why is it that it's just girls that like strawberries?  Most guys seem to be able to take them or leave them.  My husband doesn't really eat them.  I'm not complaining, I would be devastated if I had to share my berries.  There really aren't that many of them.  And after all they are Goddess fruit, so really not for men, are they?


  1. Your Denmark variety sounds wonderful ! What a great informative post. Several weeks ago I made strawberry soap without any FO just fresh strawberries and it still smells fantastic but the fruit was home grown without any chemicals. Can't wai to make more next year

  2. Really! Fresh strawberries in soap! That sounds wonderful. I need to try that.

  3. I, too, go totally gaga over strawberries! Only raspberries can top them, my first and foremost Fairy Candy. My husband adores strawberries. One of the very first gifts I made him was to pick strawberries at a local farm, put them in an adorable little wooden basket and hold that aromatic gift under his nose while he was asleep. He says he'll never forget how good they smelled :)

  4. Strawberries are adorable. I love them with biscuit cake and cream. I also love wild strawberries. They are tiny but so aromatic.


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