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Strawberries are perhaps the easiest fruit to start growing indoors. Whether you grow your strawberry plants from seeds or purchase plants, there are a few important tips for growing strawberries indoors.
Strawberries growing indoors require a minimum of 6 hours of direct sunlight or 12 hours under an LED plant light. Plants can be started from strawberry seeds or purchased as potted plants. Use a potting mix of mainly peat moss/coconut coir with added perlite. Pollination of indoor strawberry blossoms is often incomplete unless each flower is hand-pollinated.
Homegrown strawberries can pack substantially more flavor than your average store-bought berry. There’s nothing like a sweet and juicy homegrown snack fresh from your windowsill. Read on to learn how to grow strawberries indoors.
There are two main options for gathering supplies for your indoor strawberry garden: buy a pre-made kit or get the supplies separately (and get to choose the variety).
Most kits are only available with strawberry seeds (not grown plants). My favorite kit way to grow strawberries indoors is Click and Grow Strawberries. Supplies often need to be purchased separately for strawberry plants that already have leaves and blossoms (but you’ll get strawberries sooner!).
Here is a video I made showing how to plant an easy-to-grow baby potted strawberry plant in a container:
Seeds for growing your own strawberry plants are usually cheaper than buying baby plants. That said, seeds are more difficult to grow and take longer to produce fruit. Pre-grown strawberry plants tend to be more expensive but yield quickly (with potted plants being more expensive and closer to harvest than bare-root plants).
NOTE: If things go badly for some reason…say your baby seedlings dry out and die…you can ALWAYS just start again with fresh seeds, order some live bare-root strawberry plants, or pick up a few potted strawberry seedlings. No big deal.
Growing plants from snipped runners or baby strawberry plants will yield berries much faster than growing your plants from seeds! We’re talking 5-6 weeks for a baby strawberry plant that isn’t flowering at all yet….to 5-6 months for strawberry plants grown at home from seeds.
Strawberries grown indoors do best with a daily minimum of 6 hours of direct sunlight or 12 hours of artificial light from a high-quality plant light. Six hours of natural sunlight is possible only in homes with great sun exposure and can be nearly impossible to achieve during northern winters.
If you don’t have a bright, sunny window for your strawberry plants, provide extra artificial light with an LED plant light. Set the plant light on for 12 hours (daytime) and then off for 12 hours (nighttime). Some plant lights even come with built-in timers and automatic switches.
Strawberries that are grown indoors from seeds typically yield ripe strawberries 5-6 months after the seeds germinate. For quicker results, purchase strawberry seedling plants.
Seedling plants may already have blossoms or immature strawberries growing on them when you purchase them (see photo below). While the blossoms usually take 4-6 weeks to yield ripe strawberries, the already-growing berries may be almost ready. With a well-selected plant, you can be harvesting berries within a much shorter time span.
Strawberry plants don’t need too much water, but they do appreciate deep watering now and then. Established indoor strawberries like infrequent deep watering but do not like to sit around in waterlogged soil.
Once your own strawberry plant is established, it’s beneficial to let the soil dry out for a day or two before you water it again. Don’t keep the plant overly moist all the time. Read more about how to grow strawberries.
Applying a high-quality organic fertilizer is key to healthy indoor strawberries. Using a generic organic fertilizer, fertilize strawberries every month with light feeding. Pre-mixed organic fertilizers can be applied according to package instructions.
Strawberries make excellent container plants due to their compact size and hardy roots. You can grow them in anything from a strawberry pot to hanging baskets. Here are some container ideas for growing strawberries.
Containers and planters for indoor strawberries should always have a drain hole, similar to container herb gardens. A little bit of perlite in the potting mix won’t hurt either!
It is certainly possible to grow hydroponic strawberries using an indoor hydroponic planter like an AeroGarden. Hydroponic strawberries are grown in an inert growing medium and fed with a nutrient-rich solution.
Looking for more information about growing delicious strawberries? Here are some of the best varieties, plus tips for growing them.