Our first strawberry patch is yielding a bumper harvest. Ed planted 4 long rows last year – Gracie loves strawberries! – and they’re doing extremely well. They taste deliciously sweet but we’ve more than we can eat and pick – and if we don’t get to them in time the heavy fruit at the bottom starts to rot where the berries touch the damp soil.
Straw is the answer, according to Ed’s dad, which is why many people think they’re called ‘straw’berries. Although it’s more likely that the name comes from ‘strew’ or ‘spread around’ to describe how the wild plant’s tendrils grow – and named long before strawberries were cultivated. As the straw needs to go down just as the flowers finish, we’ll have to wait till next summer to give it a try.