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How to start strawberry seeds indoors

Updated: Jun 9, 2023

Strawberries are easy to grow from bare roots, but growing them from seed is a bit more challenging. Although we include brief detailed instructions with our seeds, we wanted to post this blog to help identify and remedy some of the germination hurdles some folks have been having. Growing strawberries from seeds indoors can be a fun and rewarding project for gardeners of all levels. In this blog, we will guide you through the process of growing strawberries from seed indoors.

Step 1: Choose the right kind of strawberry seeds

Select the right kind of strawberries for your home or garden. Most Alpine or wild varieties have lower yields, but a much more intense flavor unique only to their variety while more mainstream and hybrid varieties have a higher yield but a more mild-tempered flavor. Some strawberry varieties produce runners and some do not.

Step 2: Gather materials

Step 2: Gather Materials You will need the following materials to get started:

  • Strawberry seeds

  • Seed starting soil or coco coir (avoid using recycled outdoor soil)

  • Seed trays or pots

  • Plastic wrap or a plastic cover

  • A spray bottle or watering can

  • Grow lights

Step 3: Prepare the soil

Fill the seed trays or pots with seed-starting soil. You can purchase seed-starting soil at a garden center or make your own by combining peat moss, vermiculite, and perlite. Moisten the soil with water until it is damp but not soggy. Avoid reusing outdoor soil when starting your seeds, which may harbor disease, bug eggs, and not retain moisture like coco coir or seeds start mix does. You can transplant to a sterilized soil or potting mix after the seedlings have sprouted.

Step 4: Plant the seeds

Sow the strawberry seeds on top of the soil, spacing them about an inch apart. Press the seeds lightly into the soil, but do not bury them too deep. Cover the seed tray or pot with plastic wrap or a plastic cover to create a humid environment for the seeds to germinate. After speaking with some folks, we learned that seeds were being buried in the soil. Strawberry seeds need light to grow, if they are covered with soil, they will not germinate. The soil should be 45-60 degrees (F) and they need to be covered to preserve the humidity.

Step 5: Provide enough light

Place the seed tray or pot under grow lights. If you are using a windowsill, make sure the plants get at least six hours of sunlight per day. If you are using grow lights, keep them on for 14-16 hours per day.

Step 6: Water your seeds

Keep the soil moist but not wet. Use a spray bottle or watering can to water the seeds gently. Avoid overwatering, as this can cause the seeds to rot. Once the seeds germinate and the plants start to grow, you can water them more deeply.

Step 7: Transplant the seedlings

Once the seedlings have two sets of true leaves, they are ready to be transplanted into larger pots or containers. Gently remove the seedlings from the seed tray or pot and transplant them into the new containers, being careful not to damage the roots. At this stage, you can use potting soil, if you choose to reuse outdoor soil, sterilize it with hot water and allow it to cool prior to transplanting your seedlings.

Step 8:Caring for your seedlings:

Place the plants in a sunny location and water them regularly. Fertilize them every two weeks with a balanced fertilizer. Remove any runners that appear, as these can drain energy from the main plant. You can expect your strawberries to start producing fruit in about 3-4 months.

Patience & attention to detail are key to successfully growing strawberries from seed

Strawberry seeds can take 6 weeks to germinate. They are sensitive and temperamental, & if conditions aren't just right, little to no germination can result. The biggest identifiers we have recognized are seeds getting buried in the soil, as well as seeds not being covered. Strawberry seeds need humidity and light to grow. Sprinkling them on the soil surface and covering them will give them the optimal environment to germinate. We provide instructions with our strawberry seeds to give you the knowledge to succeed. We encourage those who wish to grow strawberries from seed to adhere to the instructions as closely as possible as these can be temperamental to grow. We are always happy to help if you have any questions, just send us a message via chat or email. Happy growing!

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