I broke down and purchased six Hood strawberry plants last year. They used to be hard to find around this area, but are gaining popularity again. I used to pick Hood strawberries during the early summer when I was in Grade School and High School. By far, the Hood variety are the best tasting strawberries. They are very sweet and delicious right off the bushes, they freeze well, and the large size makes them perfect for drying with a dehydrator.
When I spotted these plants, I rushed to buy them. I did not have my old strawberry patch plowed under yet so I only bought the six plants. I put them in the ground in an area about twenty feet away from the old patch so these new berries would have a lot of room to grow. I spaced the plants out so each one had five feet around it.
The plants send out runners. I buried the ends of the runners so they would take root. This picture shows how many plants I have from those first six in just one year. I will leave these growing just as they are until the strawberry season is over, then run the lawn mower over them to cut back all the extra foliage. In the fall, I will replant the berries that are not spaced well and work this patch into rows of strawberries so they are more easily managed.
This is not to say I’m cheap, but if a gardener has an extra year to wait for a new patch of strawberries, this is an economical way to go. My initial investment at $1.99 each for six plants looks like a very good deal.