Strawberries, while an excellent source of fruits for any garden, can also offer great ground cover and interest to a space because of their ability to grow quickly and spread or hang depending on what their purpose is in a particular space. There are many different varieties of strawberry, from large ones that are perfect for eating and baking, to smaller ones that are more for decorative purposes. They also come in several different colours, with some being a traditional red, and others being more pink or even fuchsia.
To grow strawberries, it is best to have them up in a planter or a raised bed that will give them the space to cascade down over an edge. This will also help you as a gardener and picker, remove the fruit that ripens on the vines. Having the strawberry plants cascade over a ledge also allows the plant to be off of the soil and will help to ensure that the fruit does not rot or become damaged as it might if it were to be left resting on the soil. The cascading nature of the strawberry plant makes it a perfect candidate for hanging baskets and container gardens. Everbearing strawberries work the best for this because they are hybrid varieties that have been selectively bred to continually flower and produce fruit throughout the entirety of a growing season. Depending on the variety of everbearing strawberry you plant, they will have either a white, pink, or soft red coloured flower. Strawberry baskets that utilise a mixture of plant varieties create an impressive display of foliage and flower colours.
Strawberry plants naturally send out what are called runners, that when come into contact with soil, will produce a clone of the mother plant. These runners can be left on the plant if you want to create a dramatic effect, or can be removed and replanted in another location to create additional plants. The runners will produce small tufts of leaves on them in a small cluster, and it is from this small grouping of foliage, that another plant will produce when replanted. Runners may draw energy and nutrients from the mother plant if not removed, but if you are growing the plants for aesthetics, this will not be a concern.
There are also heirloom and native varieties of strawberries that generally have darker green leaves and smaller berries. These varieties are perfect for ground cover alternatives when landscaping a space. They naturally spread to accommodate a desired location, but are also quite easy to control and cut back if they encroach on a location where they are unwelcome. They too flower and are a nice alternative for covering large areas. They also send out runners, and since they are on the ground, spread quite quickly. They can be planted in most soil varieties, and will cascade and cover any obstacles that are near them. They look fantastic when planted on slopes and have the space to ramble. Strawberry plants are very dynamic, and make a great addition to any garden space, no matter the available space.