Strawberry Production Guide

‌Facts and Production Costs - Data from 1991-92 to current season.

Fungicides approved for disease management of strawberry diseases in Florida
Always read and follow label directions for any chemical that you wish to apply. Fungicide labels are provided in PDF, to view using 

Adobe Acrobat Reader®

ChemicalFungicide GroupaMaximum Rate Per Acre Per Application SeasonMin. Days To HarvestPertinent
Badge SC,
Basic Copper 50W,
Basic Copper 53,
Champ DP Dry Prill, 
Champ Formula 2 Flowable,
Champ WG,
Champion Wettable Powder,
Copper Count-N,
Cuprofix Ultra 40 Disperss,
Kentan DF, 
Kocide 2000,
Kocide 3000,
Kocide DF, 
Nordox 75WG,
Nu Cop 3L, 
Nu Cop 50 DF,
Nu Cop 50 WP,
Nu Cop HB
M1 See label See label 1-2 Angular leaf spot Frequent use of copper fungicides may cause foliar burn
Kumulus DF,
Micro Sulf,
Microfine sulfur,
Microthiol Disperss,
Sulfur 90W,
Thiosperse 80%,
Wettable Sulfur,
Wettable Sulfur 92,
Yellow Jacket Dusting Sulfur,
Yellow Jacket Wettable sulfur
M2 See label See label 1 Powdery mildew Do not use during hot weather
Thiram Granuflo
M3 4.4 lb 22 lb 3 Botrytis fruit rot Do not rotate treated crops with other crops for which Thiram is not registered
Captan 50 W,
Captan 50 WP,
Captan 80 WDG,
Captec 4L
M4 See label See label 1


Botrytis fruit rot
Leaf spot

Rate per treated acre. Special label for FL allows up to 24 applications per season
Captevate 68 WDG
(captan + fenhexamid)
M4 + 17 5.25 lb 21 lb 0 Botrytis fruit rot
Do not make more than 2 consecutive applications
Thiophanate-methyl 85 WDG,
T-Methyl 70 W WSB,
T-Methyl E-AG 4.5 F,
T-Methyl E-AG 70 WSB,
Topsin 4.5 FL,
Topsin 70 WDG,
Topsin M 70 WP,
Topsin M WSB
1 See label See label 1

Botrytis fruit rot

Colletotrichum crown rot

Leaf scorch

Leaf blight

Powdery mildew

Fungicides from different chemical groups should be used in spray program for disease resistance management
Iprodione 4L AG,
Nevado 4F,
Rovral 4 Flowable
2 2 pt 2 pt N/A

Botrytis fruit rot

Phomopsis soft rot

Leaf spot

Stem end rot

Do not make more than 1 application per season. Do not apply after first fruiting flower
Bumper 41.8 EC,
3 4 fl oz 16 fl oz 0


Leaf spot

Powdery mildew

Do not make more than 2 consecutive applications
Nova 40W,
Rally 40WSP,
Sonoma 40 WSP
3 5 oz 30 oz 0

Powdery mildew

Leaf spot

Leaf  blight

Do not plant rotational crops until 30 days after last application
Procure 50WS
3 8 oz 32 oz 1 Powdery mildew Do not plant leafy vegetables within 30 days or root vegetables within 60 days or rotational crops not on label for one year after application
MetaStar 2E AG
4 2 qts 6 qts 0 Phytophthora diseases See label for use in drip irrigation
Ridomil Gold EC,
Ridomil Gold SL 
4 1 pt/trtd acre 1 ½ qt/trtd acre 0 Phytophthora diseases See label for use in drip irrigation
Scala SC
9 18 fl oz 54 fl oz 1 Botrytis fruit rot Do not make more than 2 consecutive applications. Do not use more than 2 of 6 appl. in any one season
11 15.4 fl oz 1.92 qt 0

Powdery mildew

Botrytis(suppression only)

Do not make more than 2 sequential appl. and no more than 4 appl/crop year. See label for instructions on dipping transplants
Cabrio EG
11 14 fl oz 70 fl oz 0

Leaf spot

Powdery mildew

Botrytis(suppression only)

Do not make more than 2 sequential applications and no more than 5 appl/crop year
11 3.2 oz. 19.2 oz. 0

Powdery mildew

Phomopsis leaf blight and soft rot

Botrytis (suppression)

Anthracnose (suppression)


Do not apply more than 2 sequential applications of Flint of other Group 11 fungicides. Do not exceed more than 6 total applications of Group 11 fungicides per season
13 6 fl oz 24 fl oz 1 Powdery mildew Do not make more than 2 consecutive applications or more than 4 applications per crop
Elevate 50 WDG
17 1.5 lb 6 lb 0 Botrytis fruit rot Do not make more than 2 consecutive applications
(pyraclostrobin + boscalid)
11 + 7 23 oz 115 oz 0

Botrytis fruit rot

Powdery mildew
Leaf spot

Do not make more than 2 consecutive appl. and no more than 5 appl/ crop
Switch 62.5 WG
(cyprodinil + fludioxonil)
9 + 12 14 oz 56 oz 0

Botrytis fruit rot


Do not make more than 2 consecutive appl. Do not plant crops not on the label for 30 days after last appl. See special label for instructions on dipping transplants
Helena Prophyt,
(potassium phosphite )
33 See label See label 0 Phytophthora diseases May cause foliar burn if applied with copper based products
Aliette WDG,
Legion 80WDG,
Linebacker WDG
33 5 lb 30 lb 12 hr Phytophthora diseases Do not tank mix with copper fungicides, adjuvants or foliar fertilizers
Serenade Max,
Serenade ASO
(Bacillus subtilis)
44 See label See label 0

Powdery mildew

Botrytis fruit rot

Should to be used in combination with other fungicides
Regalia SC
(Reynoutria sachalinensis)
P 1% v/v - 0 Powdery mildew See label for additional instructions
Armicarb 100,
(potassium bicarbonate )
NC See label See label 1 Powdery mildew Do not mix with highly acid products
Actinovate AG
(Streptomyces lydicus)
NC 12 oz. - 0


Powdery mildew

Should be integrated into an overall disease management strategy
(hydrogen dioxide)
NC 64 fl. oz. - 0


Crown rot

Powdery mildew

Angular leaf spot

Conduct a compatibility test before tank mixing with fertilizers, fungicides or bactericides
(Bacillus pumilus)
NC 4 qt - 0 Powdery mildew (suppression) Use in a tank mix or rotational program with other registered fungicides

Fungicide group (FRAC Code): Numbers (1-37) and letters (M, U, P) are used to distinguish the fungicide mode of action groups. All fungicides within the same group (with same number or letter) indicate same active ingredient or similar mode of action. This information must be considered for the fungicide resistance management decisions. M = Multi site inhibitors, fungicide resistance risk is low; U = Recent molecules with unknown mode of action; P = host plant defense inducers. Source: (FRAC = Fungicide Resistance Action Committee). Be sure to read a current product label before applying any chemicals.

Insecticides, Miticides and Molluskicides for Management of Insect, Mite, Snail and Slug Pests


Numerous insect and mite pests in Florida affect production and economic returns in strawberry.  Crop managers face enormous difficulties in managing these arthropods efficiently.  Once the strawberry crop is in the field, there largely remain only three options for management, (1) a few cultural techniques such as removing ripe fruit from the field to reduce infestations of sap beetles, (2) a few biological techniques such as releasing Phytoseiulus persimilis for control of twospotted spider mite, and (3) insecticides and miticides.

There are numerous active ingredients available to strawberry crop managers in Florida.  In many cases the selection and effective use of products among these is key to the efficient management of losses to arthropods.  Table 1 presents the active ingredients available to strawberry crop managers in Florida, selected products available from each of the active ingredients, reentry and pre-harvest intervals that must be observed, and arthropods presented on product labels that may be important strawberry crop managers in Florida.  Other products composed of the active ingredients may be available and other arthropods may be presented on product labels.

The product label communicates the lawful use of the insecticides and miticides and must be read, understood and followed.  The label contains very important limitations that may not be presented in Table 1, such as restrictions on numbers of applications.  When using a pesticide for the first time, it is important to apply the product first to a small portion of the crop and wait to observe possible detrimental effects, such as leaf distortion and plant stunting.


(others may exist)

(see label)

Abamectin AgriMek 0.15 EC 
12 hours 3 days twospotted spider mites


Acequinocyl Kanenite 15 SC 12 hours 1 day twospotted spider mites


Neemix 4.5%EC
12 hours 0 days arnyworms, caterpillars, loopers, thrips


Ecozin 3% EC 
12 hours 0 days aphids, beetles, borers, bugs, fruit flies
Azatin 3% XL Plus 

Aza Direct
4 hours 

4 hours
0 days 

0 days
aphids, armyworms, beetles, caterpillars, and loopers, thrips, aphids, armyworms, flies, mites, thrips, whiteflies
Bacillus thuringiensis kurstaki Javelin WG 
4 hours 0 days armyworms, loopers,  omnivorous leaftiers,


Lepinox WDG 
12 hours 0 days armyworms, loopers,


Biobit HP 

DiPel ES 

DiPel DF 

4 hours 

4 hours 

4 hours 

4 hours
0 days 

0 days 

0 days

0 days
armyworms, loopers 

armyworms, caterpillars, loopers 

armyworms, loopers
Bacillus thuringiensis aizawai Agree WG 
4 hours 0 days armyworms


4 hours 0 days armyworms, loopers
Beauveria bassiana Botanigard ES 

Mycotrol O 
4 hours 

4 hours
0 days 

0 days
aphids, thrips



Naturalis L 
4 hours 0 days ants, aphids, armyworms, budworm, loopers, lygus bug, tarnished plant bug, thrips,
Bifenazate Acramite-50WS
12 hours 1 day twospotted spider mites
Bifenthrin Brigade WSB 
12 hours 0 days aphids, armyworms,  plant bugs, stink bugs, spider mites


Carbaryl Sevin 4F 

Cutworm and Cricket Bait

Sevin 80% S 

Carbaryl 4 L 
12 hours

12 hours 

12 hours

12 hours
7 days

7 days 

7 days


7 days
cutworms, omnivorous leaftiers, tarnished plant bugs 

armyworms, crickets, ants, grasshoopers 

armyworms, omnivorous leaftier, tarnished plant bugs 

omnivorous leaftier, tarnished plant bug
Diazinon Diazinon 50W 

Diazinon AG 600 WBC 

Diazinon AG 500 
24 hours 5 days Aphids, cyclamen mites


Dicofol Kelthane 50 WSP 
48 hours

3 days

cyclamen mite, twospotted spider mite  
Endosulfan Thionex 50W 

Endosulfan 3EC
24 hours

48 hours
4 days 

4 days
tarnished plant bugs, cyclamen mite


Etoxazole Zeal 12 hours 1 day twospotted spider mites, lygus, spittlebug, tarnished plant bug
Fenpropathrin Danitol 2.4 EC 
24 hours 2 days lygus, tarnished plant bug, twospotted spider mite


Fenbutatin oxide Vendex 50 WP 
48 hours 1 day twospotted spider mite


Hexythiazox Savey 50DF,CAUTION 12 hours 3 days twospotted spider mite


Imidacloprid Admire 2 Flowable

Admire Pro

Allas 2F

Couraze 1.6F

Provado 1.6
12 hours

12 hours

12 hours

12 hours

12 hours
14 days

14 days

14 days

7 days

7 days
aphids, whiteflies
Malathion Malathion 5EC 

Malathion 8F
12 hours 

12 hours
3 days 

3 days
Aphids, field crickets, lygus bugs, thrips


Methoxyfenozide Intrepid 2F 4 hours 3 days armyworms, corn earworm


Naled DiBrom 8-E 
48 hours 1 day leafrollers, spider mites, omnivorous leaftiers,  aphids, thrips, lygus


Neem oil Trilogy
4 hours 0 days aphids, mites, whiteflies, thrips; see precaution on captan label
Potassium salts of  acids (insecticidal) M-Pede 
12 hours 0 days twospotted mites, aphids, whiteflies


Propargite Omite 30W, 
Omite CR,
3 days Non-bearing plants for 1 yr twospotted spider mite
Pyrethrins PyGanic EC 5.0


12 hours 0 aphids, armyworms, beet armyworms, fruit flies, lygus, tarnished plant bugs, thrips, whiteflies
Pyrethrins + Piperonyl butoxide Evergreen ED60-6
12 hours 0 aphids, armyworms, beet armyworms, fruit flies, lygus, tarnished plant bugs, thrips, whiteflies
Pyripexyfen Esteem 0.86 EC

Esteem fire ant bait
12 hours

12 hours
2 days

1 day
banded wing whitefly, greenhouse whitefly, silverleaf whitefly
imported red fire ant
(S) methoprene Extinguish fire ant bait 4 hours 0 days imported fire ants
Spinesad Entrust

Spintor 2 SC

Justice Bait
4 hours

4 hours

4 hours
1 day

1 day

armyworms, beet armyworms, thirps, leaf rollers

imported fire ants
Spiromesifen Oberon 2SC 12 hours 3 days twospotted spider mites, whiteflies
Thiamehtoxam Actara 25 WG 12 hours 3 days aphids, leafhoppers, weevil adult, whiteflies
Strawberry Cultivars for Annual Production Systems

Craig K. Chandler and Daniel E. Legard

There are a number of breeding programs around the world that are developing cultivars specifically for annual production systems.  All of these programs have a similar breeding goal: to develop cultivars that produce profitable quantities of high quality fruit.  Ideally these cultivars would produce fruit that are large (> 10 g, with an average fruit weight > 20 g), easy to harvest, consistently attractive (i.e. have a bright, pleasing color, smooth and glossy surface, symmetrical shape, and are free of splits and cracks), and have a firm, yet desirable, texture, and a delightful flavor.  The programs may differ somewhat, however, in their objectives concerning timing of production and disease and pest resistance.  Below is a brief description of the major breeding programs that are developing cultivars for annual systems.  Selected cultivars from these programs are also briefly described -- realizing that cultivars for annual systems tend to be short lived, compared to cultivars for perennial systems.  All cultivars listed are short-day flowering types, unless otherwise noted.



The UC program is actively developing cultivars for the commercial strawberry industry in California.  Cultivars from this program have typically performed well in areas like coastal California where winters are relatively mild.  This includes the coastal plains of the southeastern U.S., Mexico, southern Spain, Italy, and France, north Africa, and subtropical areas in South America and Australia.  Cultivars developed for southern California (mild winter, warm summer) have the potential to produce high fruit yields during late winter, spring, and early summer, while cultivars developed for the central coast of California (cool winter, mild summer) have the potential to produce high fruit yields during the spring, summer, and fall.  All advanced selections in the UC program are currently being tested for tolerance to twospotted spider mites (Tetranychus urtricae), and resistance to crown and root rotting diseases caused by Verticillium albo-atrum and Colletotrichum acutatum.

Camarosa (introduced in 1993).  Originally billed as a replacement for Chandler in southern California, Camarosa has performed well throughout the state, and in other areas of the world where Chandler has been grown commercially.  Camarosa can be quite vigorous, and has high total season yield potential.  Its fruit is typically very large and firm, deep red, and flavorful when fully mature.  It is susceptible to anthracnose fruit rot (caused by Colletotrichum acutatum) and powdery mildew (caused by Sphaerotheca macularis).

Diamante (introduced in 1997) is a day-neutral cultivar.  It has replaced Selva as the predominant cultivar in the Watsonville/Salinas growing area of California.  It is superior to Selva in fresh fruit flavor, fruit size, tolerance to spider mites, and resistance to powdery mildew.  And its plant form tends to be more compact and erect than that of Selva. The internal color of Diamante fruit is lighter than that of other day-neutral cultivars.

Aromas (introduced in 1997) is a day-neutral cultivar that is particularly adapted to the conditions found near the central coast of California.  It typically produces high yields of firm, deep red fruit, and has a more erect plant habit, and greater resistance to powdery mildew, than Selva.

Gaviota (introduced in 1997) is considered an alternative to summer-planted Pajaro and fall-planted Camarosa and Chandler.  (It is not, however, adapted to the early fall digging/planting system used in Southern California.).  Gaviota has a smaller and more open plant habit than Camarosa and Chandler, and its fruit is more rain tolerant and has better eating quality than Camarosa.

Chandler (introduced in 1983).  Once the predominant cultivar in southern California, Chandler has now been largely replaced in this region by Camarosa.  It is still important in the southeastern U.S., however, because of its ability to produce high yields of attractive, exceptionally flavored fruit for local and pick-your-own sales.

Selva (1983), Seascape (1991), Pajaro (1979), Oso Grande (1987), and Parker (1983) are some UC cultivars that are being grown to a small extent in California or other annual production areas.

For up-to-date information on the UC strawberry breeding program and new cultivars from this program, see


The UF program is actively developing cultivars for the commercial strawberry industry in west central Florida.  Cultivars from this program appear to be best adapted to subtropical winter production areas of the world, such as northern Argentina and Egypt.  The UF program emphasizes the development of cultivars with high fruit yields during the early season (November - February in the northern hemisphere or May - August in the southern hemisphere).  Resistance to certain fungal diseases is also a priority.  Seedlings are passively screened for resistance to Colletotrichum crown rot (caused by Colletotrichum gloeosporioides), and advanced selections are currently evaluated for resistance to anthracnose fruit rot and susceptibility to Botrytis fruit rot (caused by Botrytis cinerea).

Sweet Charlie (introduced in 1992) has generally produced higher December and February fruit yields than other cultivars grown in west central Florida.  It is resistant to anthracnose fruit rot.  And its fruit is often sweet and flavorful, due to a consistently low acid content. Despite these positive attributes, use of this cultivar in west central Florida is currently on the decline because of the short shelf life of its fruit during warm weather, compared to some newer cultivars.  Sweet Charlie, however, can still be useful in areas where earliness and flavor are valued and fruit will be consumed locally.

Earlibrite (introduced in 2000) has the ability, like Sweet Charlie, to produce relatively high early season yields in west central Florida.  
Its  fruit is typically firmer and larger, although at times more misshapen, than fruit of Sweet Charlie.

Strawberry Festival (introduced in 2000) produces firm, deep red fruit with excellent flavor when grown in west central Florida.  The fruit is usually born on long pedicels, and is easy to harvest.  Strawberry Festival is susceptible to anthracnose fruit rot and Colletotrichum crown rot, so growers are advised to choose their transplant source carefully to avoid starting with infected plants.


NC State has an active program to develop strawberry cultivars for the Carolinas and surrounding states.  This program is evaluating selections in annual hill and greenhouse culture.  Annual hill culture is used for spring fruit production, while greenhouse culture is used to supply specialty fruit during off-season periods.  Anthracnose fruit rot and Colletotrichum crown rot are of particular concern on the hot, humid coastal plain and Piedmont sections of the southeastern U.S, so the development of cultivars resistant to these diseases is a major objective of this program.


The UM program, named “Five Aces Breeding”, is currently a public/private partnership with Davon Crest Farms on Maryland’s Eastern Shore.  Davon Crest Farms is a nursery that produces certified virus-free strawberry plug plants.  The goal of this program is to become a totally private enterprise that specializes in developing and marketing annual hill strawberry cultivars for eastern U.S. conditions.  Selections from this program are currently evaluated at test sites from south Florida to near Lake Erie in New York.  A particularly exciting objective of the program is the transfer of F. moschata flavor into cultivated strawberry.  This work is being done in cooperation with Dr. Alan  Sullivan of the University of Guelph.


This program includes three regional breeding programs: one for south Italy (Sicily, Campania, and Basilicata regions); one for the Po Valley; and one for the northern mountain area (Piemonte and Trentino regions).  Cultivars developed for south Italy produce fruit during the winter and early spring; those developed for the Po Valley produce fruit in the spring; and those for the northern mountain regions produce fruit during the summer.  Strawberries in south Italy are grown in walk-in tunnels to enhance winter production, whereas strawberries in the Po Valley and in the northern mountain area are grown in walk-in tunnels or the open field.  Breeding objectives include adaptation to alkaline soils (pH 7.5-8.2) and resistance to the following diseases: Phytophthora root rot (caused by Phytophthora cactorum), Verticillium root rot, powdery mildew, Botrytis fruit rot, and anthracnose fruit rot.

Addie (introduced in 1982) is well adapted to conditions in the Po Valley, and in this production area is an early to mid season cultivar.

Idea (introduced in 1991), like Addie, is adapted to the Po Valley production area.  It is considered a late season cultivar.  Plants of Idea are vigorous and have performed well on non-fumigated soils.  Its fruit are typically orange-red, large, and moderately firm.


The breeding program located at this center, which is near Bergerac, France, has as its goal to develop short-day and day-neutral cultivars that have the fruit appearance and flavor characteristics of Gariguette, but are less susceptible to Phytophthora cactorum and Colletotrichum acutatum than is Gariguette.  CIREF has introduced a number of short-day (Ciflorette, Ciloe, Cigaline, Cireine,Cigoulette, Cifrance) and day-neutral (Cijosée, Cirafine, Cirano, Cilady) cultivars since its breeding program began in 1988.


This program, which began in 1985, is a cooperative effort by scientists from three organizations: Instituto Valenciano de Investigaciones Agrarias (IVIA), Centro de Investigatción y Formación Agraria (CIFA), and Universidad de Huelva.  The main goal of the program is to develop fresh market cultivars for the Huelva and Valencia growing areas.  High early season (January - March) production is an important breeding objective in the Huelva area.


This program has developed numerous cultivars that produce high early season (November - January) fruit yield in the warmer Mediterranean areas.  Plants of these cultivars have the ability to start producing ripe fruit in November (May in the southern hemisphere) even if they have not been grown in a high elevation or high latitude nursery (where they would typically be exposed to low temperature conditioning before digging).  The program introduced MalahYael, and Tamar in the late 1990's.


There are two distinct public strawberry breeding programs in Australia: one is part of the Victoria Department of Agriculture and is located near Melbourne;  the other is part of the Queensland Horticulture Institute (QHI) and is located near Brisbane.  Strawberries in Victoria are grown in a Mediterranean-type climate (wet winters, dry summers), and the objectives of the Victorian program are similar to the programs based in the central coast of California (Watsonville/Salinas area).  Cultivars that have the potential to produce high fruit yields during the spring, summer, and fall are desirable.  The main production area in Queensland has a subtropical climate (mild winters, hot, wet summers).  The Queensland program has developed cultivars with the potential for high late fall and winter production.  Also, because of rainy conditions during recent winters, the program has been able to select some genotypes that are quite resistant to cracking and checking.

Kabarla (introduced in 1995) from QHI lends itself to very early planting dates (mid March in the southern hemisphere; mid September in the northern hemisphere).  Consequently, it is able to produces very high early season yields.  Fruit of Kabarla have medium to high soluble solids and acidity levels, and are typically medium sized, firm, and rain resistant.

Redlands Joy (introduced in 1992) from QHI is very productive during the mid-season period (July - August in the southern hemisphere; January - February in the northern hemisphere).  The fruit of Redlands Joy is consistently well liked by consumers (probably because of its sweet flavor, which results from low acidity), but special care is required when harvesting and packing this fruit because it bruises easily.


This program is developing cultivars for protected (plastic tunnel) culture (which is used for fall, winter, and spring production).

Nyoho (introduced in 1984) has been a very popular cultivar in Japan.  Its fruit is attractive and sweet.

Tochinomine (introduced in 1992) is resistant to powdery mildew, and produces long conic fruit with a deep scarlet color and an excellent flavor.

Tochiotome (introduced in 1995) is high yielding, and produces fruit that is larger, firmer, and sweeter, than that of Nyoho.


INTA (National Institute of Agricultural Technology) in Argentina, and INIA (National Agriculture Research Institute) in Uruguay both have initiated breeding programs to develop cultivars adapted to subtropical fall, winter, and spring conditions.  The breeding work in Argentina is being conducted at INTA’s research facility near Tucuman, while INIA’s program is based at the research center at Las Brujas.  The objectives of these programs are similar to those of the University of Florida program (described above).


This program has developed a series of cultivars for the UK that crop in succession over a five month period (late May to mid October in southern England) or a seven month period if plastic tunnels are used to extend the season on both ends.

Pegasus (introduced in 1990) is a mid season cultivar that has been consistently productive and is resistant to Verticillium wilt.

Eros (introduced in 1994) is a mid season cultivar similar to Elsanta, but it has slightly larger fruit, on average, than Elsanta.  Eros is resistant to several races of red stele root rot (caused by Phytophthora fragariae).

Tango (introduced in 1995) is a strong day-neutral cultivar.  Plants are compact, yet productive.  The fruiting period of Tango bridges the gap between late short-day cultivars and late day-neutral cultivars, such as Selva.

Bolero (introduced in 1996) is a day-neutral cultivar that is later cropping than Tango.  It combines excellent fruit quality with resistance to powdery mildew.


This program has developed strawberry cultivars that are adapted to one or more of the production areas in the European temperate zone, which is roughly between 45 and 60° north latitude.  Selections are evaluated under both field and greenhouse conditions.

Gorella (introduced in 1960) produces large fruit and can be grown successfully from northern Italy to Denmark.

Elsanta (introduced in 1981) is the major cultivar throughout much of western Europe.  The firm flesh and strong skin of Elsanta fruit gives this cultivar greater harvest efficiency than other cultivars adapted to this region.



This company, whose headquarters is in Watsonville, California, develops proprietary cultivars for its growers in California, Florida, and other annual production areas around the world.  Cultivars recently patented by DSA include AlisalAlta VistaBaezaMontalvoMirador, andCaptiva.


Like Driscoll, PSI also has its headquarters in Watsonville, California.  PSI is a research and development company that has developed numerous proprietary cultivars.  These cultivars are only available to licensed growers.  More information on PSI can be obtained at their web site


California Giant, Inc. is a Watsonville based grower-shipper.  This company has a breeding program that evaluates selections on non-fumigated soils.  Currently they have two cultivars, Cal Giant #2 and Cal Giant #3, that are being offered for sale through California Pacific Plant Exports, Inc. of Chico California (  Both of these cultivars reportedly perform as well on non-fumigated soil as they do on fumigated soil.


VPP Corporation has had an active breeding program in Watsonville, California until recently.  Two day-neutral cultivars developed by VPP,Colima and Whitney, are grown commercially in the Watsonville/Salinas area.


Gem Star (introduced in 2000) is resistant to anthracnose, and has performed well in North Carolina.

Treasure (introduced in 2000) is well adapted to the west central Florida production area.  This cultivar is resistant to anthracnose, and its fruit has a deep red exterior color and is very resistant to abrasion.

Darbonne, S.A. nursery of Milly-la-Forêt France has developed and introduced a number of cultivars for open-field and protected culture production systems.

Darselect (introduced in 1995) is a mid season cultivar in the French production areas.  It produces fruit that is bright red, glossy, flavorful, and has relatively low susceptibility to Botrytis fruit rot.

Planasa nursery of Navarra, Spain develops cultivars primarily for the Huelva production area in southwestern Spain.

Milsei-Tudla (introduced prior to 1996) is an early yielding cultivar with long, conical fruit.  It is being grown commercially in southwestern Spain and southern Italy.

Tudnew (introduced in 1997) is an early yielding cultivar.  It is only moderately vigorous, and therefore requires a relatively close within row spacing.  Its fruit is very firm, but should not be allowed to stay on the plant too long because of a tendency to become dark.

For more information on Planasa’s cultivars, see


CIV (Consorzio Italiano Vivaisti), whose headquarters is in Ferrara, Italy, has developed cultivars for the major production areas in both north and south Italy.

Marmolada (introduced prior to 1993) is flexible in terms of its ability to produce high quality fruit in various annual systems.  It is well adapted to the production areas of northern Italy, and also can be grown successfully in other temperate areas of Europe.

Tethis (introduced prior to 1997) produces very attractive, high quality fruit in the southern Italy production areas.

Eris (introduced prior to 1997) is early ripening in southern Italy.  It produces fruit that are light red, attractive, and very flavorful.


Edward Vinson, Ltd. of Faversham, Kent England is a fruit growing company that began a breeding program in 1986 to breed everbearing cultivars for northern European conditions.  The first cultivar released from the program was Evita, which has recently been followed by Everest and Everglade.

Growing Strawberries in the Home Garden

C.K. Chandler, T.E. Crocker, J.F. Price, and E.E. Albregts

Temperatures between 50 and 80oF and day lengths 14 hours or less are required for the development of flowers and fruit on most strawberry (Fragaria x ananassa Duch.) varieties.  In areas of the U.S. north of Florida (except for the coastal areas of southern and central California) these conditions occur only for a short period in the late summer or early fall, and again briefly in the spring.  In peninsular Florida, however, these conditions exist for much of the fall, winter and spring.  Single crown (stem) strawberry plants are planted in Florida during the fall, from late September to early November.  Flowering and fruit production generally begins in November and continues into April or May. Fruit production over this period is not constant, but occurs in two or three cycles, and can be interrupted by freezing weather.  Because the highest quality fruit is produced on relatively young plants with not more than four or five branch crowns, plants are usually tilled under at the end of the fruiting season, and new plants are planted the following fall.

The purpose of this paper is to present guidelines for the successful production of strawberries in the Florida home garden. 


Four varieties are currently recommended for the Florida garden:  ‘Camarosa’, ‘Sweet Charlie’, and 'Festival'.   All three varieties produce attractive, flavorful berries suitable for eating fresh or for freezing.  ‘Camarosa’ has been the most productive variety in North Florida.  Adapted varieties are capable of producing 1 to 2 pints of fruit per plant over the season.


Strawberries grow best in a location receiving at least 8 hours of direct sunlight per day.  If a full sun location is not available, try to choose a spot that is sunny during the morning and early afternoon.  The soil should be well drained and slightly acidic (pH 5.5-6.5).

Most strawberry plants grown in Florida are planted in double rows on soil that has been mounded into raised beds (Figure 1).  After beds are  made, drip irrigation tape or tubing can be laid (emitter side up)in a 2 to 3 inch deep trench down the center of the bed.  One to 2 inches of soil are placed on top of the tubing before fertilizer is banded and covered with the remaining loose soil.  Strawberry plants also can be grown in planter boxes,strawberry pots, barrels (Stephens and Locascio, 1994), and other types of containers.  Raised beds (as compared to flat beds) create a well drained soil environment in which roots have sufficient oxygen forsurvival during periods of extended irrigation such as during the establishment of bareroot, leafy transplants, and when sprinkler irrigation is used to protect flowers and fruit from freeze damage.  Raised beds also make hand harvesting easier.  Black polyethylene sheeting (1 to 1.5 mils thick) on 48 to 60 inch wide rolls is most often used to cover the raised beds.  It provides excellent weed control and keeps the fruit cleaner than if it were lying directly on the soil surface.  Colored sheeting other than black can be used,provided it is opaque.  Clear sheeting is not recommended because it does not provide adequate weed control.

Figure 1.  Raised bed design recommended for Florida garden strawberries 
(a= 7-9 inches; b= 12 inches; c= 12-18 inches).  (Redrawn from Integrated pest 
management for strawberries, 1994. University of California Division of 
Agriculture and Natural Resources Publication 3351, p. 129)

Two pounds of 10-10-10 (or equivalent) garden fertilizer with micronutrients (including boron) per 10 feet of row should be incorporated into the bed before planting.  About one-half of the nitrogen in the fertilizer should be in a slow release form, such as a sulfur or resin coated material.  Incorporate one fourth of the fertilizer evenly across the top of the bed with a steel rake.  Apply the remainder of the fertilizer in a narrow band approximately 1 inch deep down the middle of the bed (above the drip line or soaker hose, if they have been placed in the bed).

Transplants are set through slits made in the polyethylene mulch.  Bareroot plants are the most common type of transplant available. 

These transplants may or may not have leaves on them.  Those with leaves on them at the time of transplanting generally produce greater early season fruit yield than those without leaves on them at the time of transplanting.  Bareroot transplants with leaves on them, however, usually require frequent sprinkler irrigation from about 10 am to 5 pm for the first 1 to 2 weeks after transplanting.  Another type of transplant isthe plug or containerized transplant.  This type of transplant may be available in plastic trays or in small plastic pots.  Since the root system of this type of transplant typically stays intact when the plant is pulled from its container, very little sprinkler irrigation is needed after transplanting.  Regardless of the type of transplant used, it is important not to set the transplant too deep, covering the crown, or too shallow, leaving roots exposed.

After the plants are established on the bed (i.e., when leafy bareroot transplants no longer have a tendency to wilt during the hottest part of the day) we recommend that drip tape or soaker hoses be used to keep the beds moist.  Watering at a low pressure (e.g. 10 psi) for one-half to 1 hour should thoroughly moisten the bed.  Beds can also be watered by saturating the soil between beds, but this method is not as efficient and requires more water than the within bed drIp method.  Early in the season when the plants are small, one watering per week should be sufficient.  Later in the season, when the plants are larger and weather is warmer, two or three waterings per week will be needed.

Freeze Protection

Strawberry flowers and fruit can be damaged by air temperatures below 32oF, while the leaves and crowns of the

plants that have become acclimated to cool fall and winter weather usually do not sustain any permanent damage unless they are exposed to air temperatures in the low 20s.  The most practical method for the Florida gardener to protect flowers from freeze damage may be to cover plants with old sheets or blankets or a commercial polypropylene row cover during the afternoon preceding an expected freeze.  The covering should be anchored down on all sides to prevent wind from blowing it off the plants.

Pest Management

One of the keys to successful pest management of strawberries in Florida is to start with healthy transplants – especially plants free of anthracnose (a fungal disease), spider mites, and nematodes. Growers often face an uphill battle if they start the season with diseased or infestedplants.  Plants are best purchased from a reputable nursery or garden center.

To control most fungal diseases on leaves, flowers, and fruit, the Florida gardener can apply captan or thiram weekly, starting soon as plants are established on the bed.  Removing old, diseased leaves from the plants may help to reduce future leaf and fruit infections.  Powdery mildew, a fungal disease that results in leaf distortion and powdery white patches on the underside of leaves, is usually brought under control with several spray applications of sulfur.  Sulfur should be applied when the air temperature is less than 80oF to reduce the chance of causing foliage or fruit burn.

The type of insect pest feeding on strawberry plants generally changes as the season progresses.  Early in the

season (i.e., Oct. and Nov.), various types of caterpillars (“worms”) are often found feeding on crown, leaf, or young flower tissue. Applications of Bacillus thuringiensis insecticide such as Dipel ® are usually effective at controlling small caterpillars.  Large caterpillars can be removed and destroyed by hand, or, if this is not practical, one or two applications of Diazinon can be made.

Later in the season, aphids or flower thrips may cause some damage to developing fruit.  Malathion can be used to control these pests, although natural predators and parasites will usually take care of the problem, if the gardener has patience.

Spider mites (which are tiny arthropods that suck juices from plant leaves) are generally a more persistent pest on strawberries in Florida than are insects.  Start examining plants for spider mites in early December, looking for plants that are not thrifty or have pale yellowish-green leaves.  A hand lens can be used to see the mites moving about on the underside of leaves.  Several miticides are labeled for use on strawberries in Florida, including fenbutatin-oxide (Vendex®) and dicofol (Kelthane®).  Single applications of miticides usually are not recommended.  They are most effective when two (or even three when infestations persist) applications are made, spaced approximately 5 days apart.  When using miticides or any other pesticides, be sure to read and follow all label directions.

Parasitic nematodes (microscopic round worms) and certain soil diseases can cause problems if strawberry plants are set in the same area year after year.  It is advisable to switch your planting to an area that has not been planted in strawberries for two or three years.  Avoid planting strawberries in areas where you have just grown tomatoes, potatoes, eggplant, or other vegetable crops that are susceptible to Verticillium wilt. Sweet corn is a good crop to plant between strawberry crops (Strand, 1993).  Solarizing the soil during the summer before planting can also help to reduce soil-borne pests.  County Cooperative Extension Offices have information on this process.

Although bird pests, such as robins and cedar waxings are difficult to control in commercial plantings of strawberries, birds can be effectively excluded from small garden plantings by covering the plants with bird netting.

Harvesting and Storage

A fruit is ready to harvest when three quarters of its entire surface area is red.  The fruit starts to deteriorate soon after it has become totally red, so it is best to harvest fruit regularly, generally, every two to four days.  Ripe strawberries are delicate and bruise easily, so a gentle picking technique is recommended.  Fruit that is held between the thumb and forefingers can be snapped from the fruit stem (pedicel) by twisting the forearm and wrist.  Strawberries that are not going to be consumed immediately after harvest should be placed in a refrigerator, preferably in a moisture proof container to keep them from drying out. 

Literature Cited

Stephens, J.M. and S.J. Locasico, 1994.  Growing strawberries in barrels.  Document MR 74-14 on CD-ROM.  Florida Cooperative Extension Service.

Strand, Larry L., 1993.  Managing pests in the home garden.  p. 127-138.  In: Integrated pest management for strawberries.  Publication 3351.  University of California. 

EDIS Strawberry Publications
Nursery Listing

US and Canadian nurseries providing quality strawberry plants.

Allen Nursery, Ltd.
Gilbert and Jeff Allen
RR #2
Centreville, Nova Scotia
Canada B0P 1J0
Phone: (902) 678-7519
Fax:     (902) 678-5924
Morse and Sons
Harry Morse
RR #2 Berwick
Kings County, Nova Scotia
Canada B0P 1E0
Phone:  (902) 538-9389
Crown Nursery, LLC
P.O. Box 340
11555 Paskenta Road
Red Bluff, CA  96080-0340
Phone:  (530) 529-6485
Fax:  (530) 529-6488
North Carolina State Univ.
Dept. of Plant Pathology
Micropropagation Unit
2518 Gardner Hall
Raleigh, NC  27695-7616
Phone:  (919) 515-7781
Fax:      (919) 515-7716
Balamore Farm Nursery, Ltd.
Joe Cooper
RR #1
Great Village, Nova Scotia
Canada B0M 1L0
Phone: (902) 668-2004
NorCal Nursery, Inc.
Ron Sakuma
P.O. Box 1012
Red Bluff, CA  96080
Phone: (530) 527-6200
Fax:      (530) 527-2921
Davon Crest Farms
David Lankford, CEO
Pine Top Road
Hurlock, MD 21643
Phone:  800-207-9862
(410) 943-8792
Fax:     (410) 943-8792
Norton Creek Farms
Wayne Moss
370 Evitt Cemetary Road
Cashiers, NC  28717
Phone:  (828) 743-3674
Fax:      (828) 743-0174


Ghesquiere Farms, Inc.
Herry and Carl Ghesquiere
RR #2
Simcoe, Ontario
Canada N3Y 4K1
Phone: (519) 428-1087
Fax:      (519) 428-6357
Local Broker: Roy Parke
Phone: (813) 752-5369
Nourse Farm, Inc.
Tim Nourse
41 River Road
South Deerfield, MA  01373
Phone: (413) 665-2658
Keddy's Nursery
Charles and Doris Keddy
982 North Bishop Road
Kentville, Nova Scotia
Canada B4N 3V7
Phone: (902) 678-4497
Fax:      (902) 678-0067
Shasta Nursery, Inc.
Roger Loftus
21008 Dersch Road
Anderson, CA  96007
Phone: (530) 365-2767
Fax:      (530) 365-1398
Lassen Canyon Nursery, Inc.
Robin Bailey, Office
1300 Salmon Creek Road
Redding, CA  96003
Phone:  (530) 223-1075
Fax:      (530) 223-6754


Sierra-Cascade Nursery, Inc.
Skip Larson, Sales Manager
472-715 Johnson Road
Susanville, CA  96130
Phone:  (31) 947-0187
Lareault Nursery
Luc Lareault
90, Rue Lareault
C.P. 523
Lavaltrie, Quebec
Canada J0K 1H0
Phone:  (514) 586-1850
Fax:      (514) 586-1051
Superior Plant Technology
5582-A Highway 99
Yuba City, CA 95991
Phone:  (916) 673-5621
Fax:      (916) 673-6526
Lewis Nursery
Cal and Everett Lewis
Sam Harrell
North Carolina
Phone:  (919) 675-2394
Fax:      (919) 675-2394
Strawberry Tyme Farms, Inc.
John and Gary Cooper
RR #2
Simcoe, Ontario
Canada N3Y 4K1
Phone:  (519) 426-3099
Fax:      (519) 426-2573
Masse Nursery
Alain Masse
256 H.R.N.
St. Cesaire, Quebec
Canada J0L 1T0
Local Broker:  Russell Griffin
Phone: (813) 659-0222
Treeland Nursery
Jerry Powers
281 Cranberry Creek Road
Laurel Springs, NC 28644
Phone:  (336) 982-4444
Millen Farms
Curtis Millen
RR #1
Great Village
COL.CO., Nova Scotia
Canada B0M 1L0
Phone: (902) 662-3820
Fax:      (902) 662-2891
Westech Agriculture Ltd.
Nora Gaudette, Manager
Alberton RR #1
Prince Edward Island
Canada C0B 1B0
Phone:  (902) 853-4184
Fax:      (902) 853-3298
Handlers and Brokers

List of local strawberry plant distributors.

BBI Produce, Inc.                                    
Contact:  Marvin Brown, Ronnie Young
14506 Walden Sheffield Road
Dover, FL  33527
Phone: (813) 659-0577  Fax: (813) 659-1790
Gulf Coast Produce
Contact:  Joseph Goodson
P.O. Box 1020
Dover, FL  33527
Phone:  (813) 757-9600  Fax:  (813) 727-9662
Calflo Produce Inc.
Contact:  John Borchard
P.O. Box 730
Plant City, FL  33564
Phone: (813) 659-1885  Fax: (813) 659-0543
Hinton Farms Produce
Contact:  Bob Hinton, Cammy Hinton
1839 N. Dover Road
Dover, FL  33527
Phone: (813) 659-2160  Fax: (813) 659-1042
Country Best
Contact:  Bruce Rodwell, Mark McDonald
203 Terrace Drive
Plant City, FL  33565
Phone: (813) 759-6604  Fax: (813) 752-9617
Rosemont Farms
Contact:  David Allie
510 N. Turkey Creek Road
Plant City, FL  33564
Phone:  (813) 754-2656  Fax:  (813) 752-2597
Dixie Growers
Contact: Charles Lawton
P.O. Box 1686
Plant City, FL  33564
Phone:  (813) 754-7652  Fax: (813) 754-5896
Parkesdale Farms
Contact:  Ken Andrews
3914 Tanner Road
Dover, FL  33527
Phone:  (813) 659-2429  Fax:  (813)  659-0300 
Driscoll's of Florida
P.O. Box 519
Dover, FL  33527
Phone:  (813) 659-2551  Fax: (813) 659-1584
SunnyRidge Farm, Inc
1900 5th Street NW
P.O. Box 3036
Winter Haven, FL  33881
Florida Elite Produce
Contact:  Don Hinton
P.O. Box 70
Sydney, FL  33587
Phone:  (813) 707-0075  Fax: (813) 717-9189
Wilson & Sons Sales
Contact:  Bob Wilson
2811 Airport Road
Plant City, FL  33567
Phone:  (813) 754-7554  Fax: (813) 752-8352
Grimes Produce Co.
Contact:  Deborah Grimes
3137 Paul Buchman Hwy.
Plant City, FL  33565
Wishnatzki Farms
Contact:  John Brown, Gary Wishnatzki
P.O. Box 1839
Plant City, FL  33564
Phone:  (813) 752-5111  Fax: (813) 752-9472