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The summer is half over. I'm looking to grow strawberries next year. Would it be a bad idea to "staple" the strawberry plants for the rest of this season into the soil (to discourage strawberries from growing berries and get more plants next season)?

I'm thinking a few 8"X10' vertical PVC pipes under the deck would be nice over the next few years.

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    By "stapling", do you mean layering? And what does the bit about PVC have to do with the rest of the question? – Niall C. Jul 23 '16 at 5:59
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    If you want to "discourage" fruiting, you cut off the flowers. – Ecnerwal Jul 24 '16 at 0:52
  • What if you want to encourage spreading so you can get more plants for next year? – black thumb Jul 24 '16 at 3:16
  • So do you just mean that you want to pin the runners down so they are making contact with the soil? – michelle Jul 25 '16 at 15:13
  • @michelle yes, to have more plants. – black thumb Jul 26 '16 at 3:22
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I'm not sure what zone you are in but here in Zone 5 the runners on the strawberries can be transplanted during the next month in order to get rooted well before winter. You can cut the runners off and replant or just retrain the runners to grow where you want. Either way, since it is still fairly hot out they will need to be watered, especially if you cut them off to transplant them.

Also of note is if you want bigger fruit next year it is best to cut all the leaves off the strawberry plants in July so that the plants do not spend all their energy into runner production. Instead the plant tends to grow bigger berries the next year. My old strawberry plants I cut off the leaves a month ago, and my new plants I just bought I am letting produce runners so I can propagate them before the winter. No clue what you are doing with the pvc. Also for new plants it is best to cut the flowers off the first year to get the plant established.

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