How to grow raspberries and strawberries in containers

Periodically growers have asked Penn State Extension for information on growing strawberries and raspberries in containers. Thanks to their Specialty Crop Research Initiative (SCRI) high tunnel project, they can share some experiences on what worked for them this past year or so.

They started using a containerized system in high tunnels because soil variability at Penn State’s high tunnel research site was an issue. The high tunnels had been used to grow many different crops over the past 17 years and so over time, the nutrient levels in each tunnel became quite variable. This was a problem for the research, as they are testing different plastic coverings for the tunnels and wanted to make sure they were correctly attributing any effects to the plastics, not to differences in the soil in each tunnel.

'Abion' strawberries and 'Polka' (left) and 'Josephine' raspberries (right) at Penn State's High Tunnel facility.

In 2015-16, they compared 4 different media types and 2 different fertilization regimes for growing day-neutral strawberries. In this experiment, they tried the type of bag used for coir gro-slabs, these are white-on-black plastic “sleeves” that lie horizontally on the ground and, when filled with media, are only 4 to 5 inches high.

Read more at Penn State Extension

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