E-Mail Ques. Lighting to induce flowering - strawberry info

Dear Dr. Myers,
I am just wondering how well strawberries grow indoors? Do I have to induce flowering by doing anything or just give them light and nutrients?

I am looking for details like how many hours of light they should get and if I
should keep the soil moist at all times or let it dry out some before
watering again.

Thanks for your question.

Yes, you can grow most anything indoors. The answer to your question depends because strawberries have different flowering habits. You can find "June-bearing" strawberries, which bear their fruit in the early summer and "Ever-bearing" strawberries, which often bear several crops of fruit throughout the season. More recently, research has shown that strawberries
actually occur in three basic flowering habits: short day, long day, and
day neutral. These refer to the day length sensitivity of the plant and
the type of photoperiod which induces flower formation. Day neutral
cultivars produce flowers regardless of the photoperiod. Most commercial
strawberries are either short day or day neutral.

To Induce Flowering -- The june bearing strawberries are short day and will need a longer night cycle than day, 12 hours lights off each day when the plants are big enough that you want to induce flowering should do the trick. Day neutral will flower when they are grown in the right temperature and are big enough. I would recommend 18 hours lights on and 6 off.

Some general info to get you started … You get faster flowering with
shortest number of days when strawberries are kept at about 15-20 degree C
(that is 59-69 F) If your grow room is much hotter or colder than this,
you will have lower or NO flowers.
As far as growth mediums strawberries do best in a loam, and should be
kept moist (not wet). After flowering and once the fruit is swelling the
plant roots should never be allowed to get dry, but when the fruit
begins to turn color minimize water use so that you don’t get fungal
problems on the leaves and fruit.

I hope this helps, let me know if you have any other questions
Dr. E.R.Myers

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