June bearing vs day neutral yields for container strawberries

Should I go with ever bearing or June bearing or a staggered planting of June bearing berries?

I want a significant yield with container grown berries. Basically I’m thinking of a table top method that is getting popular in Europe. By significant, I’m talking about a couple pints per day. The recommended varieties in my area are “Seascape” for everbearing or “Mesabi” for June bearing. I could stagger the yield on June bearing by planting Kent a second place finisher in the ag trials.

I anticipate a maximum of 100 plants in my set up.

The literature seems to be geared towards small-scale agricultural production or home novelty (I.e two or three berries at a time) plantings.

1 Like

Well, most commercial growers in the east don’t bother with day neutral because of relative low yield, I assume. But it could be because of low yield each time you pick and not over the course of the season. Even pick your own operations probably need to offer customers a reasonably quick crop for filling baskets. Years ago I started with day neutral varieties in my garden and replaced them with June types. I can’t offer specific guidance about pot grown, but I doubt the results would be that much different as far as relative yield.

Of course you should grow at least an earlier and later variety if you choose to grow June bearers. Here the latest varieties sometimes loose a lot of their crop because of excessive heat before they’ve ripened.

I saw something from UMinn to the effect that they got only a half pound per plant, (day neutral) which seems unacceptable, since a guy like me can expect less.

Maybe I’ll go 50 june bearing plants and fifty day neutral. If I get decent yield from the Junes I’ll be a little sick of them and won’t mind the relatively feeble yield of the’Seascape’ so much.

Half pound assumes the animals, bugs,fungus and disease doesn’t get them. Keep spraying them all season to get a large crop or pick the few good ones that are left for you. I replaced my day neutral with June bearing to reduce the work. Of course with enough plants, effort and good technique you can have strawberries all season with day neutral. June bearing will usually out produce initially but eventually day neutral will catch up and out produce.
The tabletop method mentioned could improve results and reduce the effort when growing day neutral.

It doesn’t take a lot to confuse me. What is the table top method?

Basically, table top is growing strawberries in containers at a convenient height. They even have commercial operations like that I Europe. Given the high labor input the berries seem to require, it makes sense. I worry about water requirements, though.

I don’t imagine I would have the luxury of just coasting after the berries come in as I would with in ground berries. That would overall be an argument in favor of everbearing----a steady payoff during the summer, if the berries produce enough to make it worthwhile.

1 Like

Thank you

From an 8x4’ raised bed, that started with 20 (2 varieties) plants 4 years ago, I harvest about a LB a day for close to 3 weeks. Total yield this season was well over 25lbs. Lost about 5% to rot and varmints.

1 Like

I don’t know what your summer weather is like, but mine is normally hot. This year was very hot with infrequent rain. The lack of rain was good as far is reduction of fungal pressures for my strawberries. I planted two types of everbearers. Monterrey and Evie 2. Both were touted as doing well for continuing to bear in the heat. Evie 2 is supposedly an improvement on Seascape in that department. They both shut down. Only now that the days have cooled to the lower to mid 90’s are they starting to bear again, but lightly. Planted in the ground, the June bearers made more and overall larger berries than the everbearing.

One noteworthy observation is that the crowns grown in containers made many more runners than the ones in the ground.

1 Like

I’m in the southern rockies. Our choices of productive higher pH tolerant plants is pretty limited. ‘Mesabi’ Cavendish, Kent and for everrbearing, ‘Seascape’ is about it. Some big name cultivars do really poorly according to ag service.