Quinault Strawberries: 8 Other Delicious Berries

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Quinault Strawberries

Quinault Strawberries

Quinault strawberries are a cultivar capable of producing two harvests per annum: one in the spring, the early summer, and another in the fall.

They are prolific during these two seasons but can also produce some fruit in the summer. Researchers at Washington State University developed the Quinault strawberries, which is named after a Washington area.

It is an easy cultivar to grow, provided you have some basic Quinault strawberry information before you begin. These strawberries are perennial and do well in zones 4-8.

They need full sun. Quinault strawberries plants are more resistant to diseases than other cultivars. They grow to 8-10 inches (20-25cm).

They can grow to 8-10 inches (20-25 cm.) tall. They can grow from 18-24 inches (45-60cm) in height. They are approximately 18 to 24 inches (45-60 cm.) in length. Quinault strawberries require rich soil and lots of water.

How to Grow Quinault strawberries And Others

By July, your plants will be strong, ready to flower and fruit. You’ll harvest berries by the handful until frost.

Chandler is a juicy, richly flavored variety and considered one of the best. It’s sold at Harmony Farm Supply, Calloways, The Rose Garden, Sonoma Mission Gardens, and Wedekind’s.

Forget going to the market. For real fruit-lovers, the only way to enjoy a lovely harvest is to try:

1: A strawberry shortcut

Planting a fruit jar

Filled to overflowing, few patio planters are more seductive than a strawberry jar.
To enjoy berries all summer long, plant an everbearing variety rather than the popular Sequoia, which will produce more runners this year than fruit.

Plant in a moist potting mix and never let it dry out. Adding water-retentive polymers helps keep the soil moist.

Feed plants with a balanced liquid fertilizer every two weeks, and pick off any flowers and runners that form before June.

By July, your plants will be strong, ready to flower and fruit. You’ll harvest berries by the handful until frost.

2: The perfect strawberry

Springbearing berries

While many of the springbearing varieties are delicious, their crops are smaller because production stops during summer.

If you have the backyard space to plant more than one kind of berry, you may want to try one of the early varieties for a crop next spring.

Sequoia is the most popular strawberry sold in Sonoma County. You can buy it at all the local garden centers and most nurseries.

Chandler is a juicy, richly flavored variety and considered one of the best. It’s sold at Harmony Farm Supply, Calloways, The Rose Garden, Sonoma Mission Gardens, and Wedekind’s.

Camarosa, a newly introduced hybrid, promises to be one of the most flavorful, reports Paul Vossen of UC Cooperative Extension. He encourages you to try it if you have the opportunity, but he isn’t aware of a local source.
Everbearing Varieties

These hybrids bear for many months in summer and early fall. They’re the ones to plant if you want a constant supply.

Eversweet is sold only at Kings Nursery; they stock it nearly year-round.
Fern, Hecker, and Tristar are deeply flavored varieties available at Harmony Farm supply. Bassignani Nursery also sells Fern and Tristar.

Ogallala. If your garden is regularly hit by late frosts, try Empire Nursery for this cold-tolerant variety that bears smaller and softer berries.

Seascape, introduced nearly 10 years ago, is a firm, jumbo variety praised as the best and criticized as the worst. Available at Harmony, Calloways, and Prickett’s.

Quinault strawberries, ranked best in flavor by Sunset, produce large, somewhat soft berries and numerous runners. You’ll find it at Wedekind’s, Bassignani, Healdsburg, and Empire Nurseries, as well as at several garden centers.

Tioga performs better in hotter inland regions than in cooler coastal zones. Sold at King’s Nursery.

Alpine or wood strawberries are as wonderful in the landscape as they are in the garden. You can buy them at California Flora Nursery, Emerisa Gardens, and Cottage Garden Growers.

Ah, the taste and aroma of farm-fresh strawberries.

They sweeten the palate so delightfully — until you get one from the grocer’s case that’s as flavorless as the box it came in.

That’s enough to send anyone on a quest for a better berry and gardeners scuttling into the backyard to spade up a bed for a strawberry patch.

It’s a mission guaranteed to bring great reward, for the tastiest berries never make it to market. Instead, they’re destined for home growing, where they face only a short trip to the kitchen sink. Many of these make the best jams, desserts, fruit leathers, and blended drinks.

University of California Horticultural Advisor Paul Vossen has conducted strawberry trials in Sonoma County over a period of many years and offers good advice about one of his favorite crops.

Like so many other fruits and vegetables, he knows that homegrown berries can be superior in every way — riper, more colorful, and definitely tastier.

“Ripening on the vine is the main difference between the strawberries we buy in the store and what we grow in the backyard,” Vossen says. “Ripe berries have the fullest flavor, but they turn to mush when shipped.”

There are a few other differences, too. While early picking keeps commercially grown berries firm for shipping, so does a solid texture. It’s the softer-bodied homegrown varieties that never sacrifice taste. And of course, in the home garden, we can grow without pesticides.

Seasonal crops

Out of the dozen or so berries offered for sale in local nurseries, what should you be looking for?

Vossen recommends planting an everbearing type rather than a June or springbearing variety for the highest productivity and flavor.

“If you put in springbearing plants now,” Vossen explains, “they won’t do much of anything until next year, but you’ll be caring for them — weeding and watering and trimming runners — until next spring.”

He suggests two alternatives. One is to wait until late July before planting, thereby avoiding summer chores. The other is to plant an everbearer, which he believes brings richer rewards. Vossen’s favorites are Fern and Hecker.

“Combining flavor and productivity,” he says, “Fern is number one and the strawberry I would plant.” And he does — by the dozen.

Planted now, everbearers will soon start to flower, so you’ll need to watch over them a bit and snip off blossoms and any runners. This forces all their energy into foliage and roots.
By July 4, plants will be strong enough to start production and yield heavy crops.

They’ll continue until late October or November, giving you nearly five months of succulent strawberries.

Vossen warns that you may see unfamiliar varieties advertised and praised in magazines with a national circulation.

“Most of these, such as Ozark Beauty and Tribute,” he explains, “are better suited to colder climates in other parts of the country. They have good flavor, but here, they’re only 10 percent as productive as Fern.”

Planting berries

Once you’ve found a promising berry, put in a little more effort and prepare a nurturing planting bed on a sunny site. The best taste depends on the care you give the plants — that means good soil, regular watering, and fertilizer.

Commercial growers discovered long ago that strawberries grow best in sandy soil. Still, you can turn your heavy clay into a suitable growing medium by mixing in liberal amounts of organic matter.

Vossen recommends that you grow strawberries at 12-inch intervals on beds raised at least 12 inches high and spread out 12 to 24 inches wide. This provides good drainage and makes for easier picking.

On wide beds, he sets two plants a few inches apart to cascade down opposite sides. He advises that you not set them too deep or cover the crown, or your berry plant will rot.

Strawberries are heavy feeders and need a balanced fertilizer. Bury slow-release granules well under the roots at planting time, but be prepared to apply a liquid product to keep foliage dark green and fruit in constant production during the growing season.

The best way to keep your crop in top form is to install an automated drip watering system. Plants stay healthiest when the soil is continuously moist in the root zone, and water never touches leaves or berries.

Fruit production tapers off, and berries tend to be smaller after a couple of years. In general, plan to replace everbearing varieties every two years and springbearers every three years.