Thursday, April 8, 2010

Strawberries Are A-Comin'!

Last year, we planted 6 strawberry plants that gave us the occasion ripe, red & juicy berry of sweet goodness that we could eat straight off the plant or slice up and have with our cereal. These plants produced strawberries all throughout the growing season here in Eastern NC--from when we first planted them through September.

The plants continued to stay green even after they stopped producing fruit, so we left them in the ground.

As blustery Autumn days blew in, and the cold of Winter set, those 6 strawberry plants continued to stay in our garden, green as ever. I debated on whether I should pull them up or leave them be.

I decided to just leave them alone.

A few weeks ago, as we started preparing our garden for the new growing season, I unburied our strawberry plants from the heavy layer of Autumn leaves that had accumulated. The strawberry plant leaves were still as green as ever. But instead of 6 very distinctive plants, we had a multitude of plants in that strawberry patch! They had literally spread out and multiplied!

But they were still alive, so I decided again to leave them alone and not pull them up.

A week ago, again working out in the garden, I took a moment to look at our strawberry plants, and wondered what I was to do with them. Were they still viable? Would I be able to reap another harvest from them?

And then I saw it. Tucked away under a green leaf.

A flower.

A beautiful, white & yellow, oh-so-beautiful strawberry flower!

In fact, tucked under some more leaves on this same particular plant, were even more flowers!

Hot dog, strawberries will be here soon!

Here's to being patient and riding things out. A year ago, I never would have believed that you could grow plants in the Winter, especially not strawberries. It gets rather cold here, and it snowed 4 times this past Winter. But we managed to grow broccoli, cabbage, onions and carrots all Winter long.

And, apparently, strawberries (so to speak :) !

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