The right way to Plant, Develop, and Look after ‘Allstar’ June-bearing Strawberries

Summer is almost upon us, and for me, nothing signals summer quite like strawberry plants beginning to blossom and set fruit. A summer day isn’t complete until I’ve picked and consumed a handful of fresh berries! 

‘Allstar’ strawberry plants are vigorous and wildly productive, so I recommend this variety if you want to work berries into your everyday snacks like I do. They can grow in containers, raised beds, or ground. Get your jam and pie recipes ready; you’ll need them! 

Let’s talk about one of my, and so many other gardeners’, favorite strawberry varieties, the June-bearing ‘Allstar’.


These strawberries are self-pollinating with a long harvest window.

Botanical Name 

Fragaria ‘Allstar’ 

Plant Type 

June-bearing strawberry

Special Characteristics

Self-pollinating, long harvest window

Native Area 

Eastern and Central Midwest North America

Watering Requirements 


Soil Type 

Loamy, well-draining, fertile 


Slugs, rabbits, birds, thrips, aphids, spotted-wing drosophila, deer, weevils, nematodes


Resistant to many, susceptible to gray mold, crown and root rot, leaf blight, and Verticillium wilt


Low to moderate

Hardiness Zones

USDA 4 to 8

Ripening Time

Late spring to early summer

What Are ‘Allstar’ June-bearing Strawberries? 

‘Allstar’ might as well come with a home gardening gold star. It’s beloved for its low-maintenance attitude, classic strawberry flavor, and high yields. Plus, it’s virtually disease-free! Fruits are big and juicy and ripen in early summer. Its thin skins make it perfect for fresh eating, desserts, and preserves.  

Unlike ever-bearing varieties that supply small to medium-sized fruits all season, ‘Allstar’ is June-bearing. This type of strawberry produces a main flush of large berries in peak summer, around June and July. They require a period of dormancy and grow well across zones


A hand gently touches a ripe June-bearing Strawberry, its vibrant red hue contrasting with lush green leaves in the background.The plant grows up to 12 inches in height and width.

The plant features dense, medium to dark green, glossy foliage and grows to about nine inches tall and 12 inches wide. The flowers are white and five-petaled with yellow centers. The berries are bright orangeish-red, large, and plentiful. 

How to Grow

‘Allstar’ is relatively low-maintenance, but to be rewarded with delicious, large berries, the plants require a few basics. 


A close-up of ripe June-bearing Strawberries nestled among verdant green leaves, showcasing their juicy red allure.
Afternoon shade or shade cloth can help during intense sunlight.

Strawberry plants require full sun to grow properly, and yields will be best when they receive six to ten hours daily. Less sunlight may result in leaf drop and a decrease in productivity. Plants will appreciate some afternoon shade. Consider using shade cloth during periods of prolonged, harsh sunlight. 


A close-up of a green watering can with water droplets, watering a lush strawberry field with vibrant green leaves and delicate white flowers in bloom.Maintain soil moisture to prevent root diseases.

The soil should be consistently moist but not waterlogged, and plants should receive at least an inch of water weekly. Root rot and disease spread quickly in soggy soil. Add compost to adjust soil consistency and help with drainage. 


A close-up of brown loamy soil, rich in texture with visible granules and organic matter, ideal for planting and gardening purposes.Ensure the pH ranges from 6 to 6.5 for optimal growth.

‘Allstar’ strawberries require well-draining, loamy, and fertile soil. They’ll appreciate a healthy application of well-aged, organic compost worked in before planting. Plants can adapt to various soil types. Amend the soil until the pH is between 6 and 6.5.


A close-up of small strawberry plants with white flowers, surrounded by straw mulch on the ground. Reapplying mulch is optional and varies among gardeners.

Mulch around your plants to reduce weed pressure, help retain soil moisture, and protect the crown from cool temperatures. If rainfall has been ample and the soil is exceptionally moist, hold off on mulching during the summer, as this could cause root and crown rot

Add several layers of organic straw mulch before the first fall frost heading into winter to protect plants from frost damage and cold temperatures. Remove any mulch put over the plants for winter protection to fertilize and clean up winter debris. Some gardeners choose to reapply mulch for the season, but it’s a personal preference. 

Climate and Temperature Requirements

A close-up of fresh organic strawberries, showing ripe and small unripe berries on a brown wooden edge of a garden bed, with green leaves in the background.Protect plants if it gets too cold or humid.

Before planting out, temperatures should be comfortably between 50°F (10°C) and 80°F (27°C). Excess humidity can cause disease, and cold temperatures may cause damage. If temperatures dip below 50°F (10°C) for a prolonged period, cover plants with row cover. 

The foliage of ‘Allstar’ is hardy enough to stick around into winter, creating a ground cover. 


A gloved hand holds a blue shovel spreading white granulated fertilizer on small strawberry plants in soil, with a yellow pail of fertilizer in the background.Apply slow-release fertilizer to new plants every two weeks.

Prepare the soil by mixing lots of well-aged compost and a potassium-rich fertilizer, spreading about ⅓ cup around each area where a plant will grow. Use a high-quality, all-purpose, well-balanced (10-10-10-) fertilizer on your strawberry plants. Feed new plants every two weeks with slow-release fertilizer. Follow the instructions and dosages as per the package instructions. 


A close-up of a hand picking strawberries among green leaves, with freshly harvested strawberries beside it.Harvest berries frequently to prevent spoilage.

When berries begin ripening, get your harvest buckets ready in late spring to early summer. Harvest often to keep berries from spoiling and avoid picking early. Strawberries won’t ripen once off the vine. 


A close-up of blue gloved hands using pruning shears to cut strawberry shoots, revealing vibrant green leaves being delicately trimmed.Runners divert energy from strawberry plants.

Pruning is unnecessary for strawberries; monitoring and removing runners will help control their spread. Runners will begin to appear in the spring as the day length increases. In year one, removing runners allows the plant to focus energy on establishing a solid root system. 


Propagating strawberry plants is fun and easy. Purchase bare roots from reputable sources, plugs, or plants at your local nursery, or create new plants by potting up runners you removed from established plants. You can even start them from seed!

Bare Roots 

A close-up of bare roots of a strawberry plant, highlighting the delicate, fibrous root system with tiny root hairs, ready for planting.Try bare-root plants for a cost-effective and diverse solution.

It’s true that bare-root plants resemble dead plants with long roots, no soil, and little or no foliage. But they’re inexpensive, especially in bulk, which is ideal if you want to plant a large strawberry plot. The process may seem weird if you’re new to planting bare roots, but trust the process. More varieties are available in bare roots than plugs and plants. 

Plugs and Plants

A close-up of a freshly removed strawberry plug plant, revealing dark soil and roots within a vibrant green seedling; blurred background features tiny green seedlings in a black container.You can find strawberry plugs and plants at local nurseries.

Find strawberry plugs and plants among annual vegetables and plant starts at your local nursery. They’ll be full of lush, dark green foliage and may contain flowers. These are a bit more expensive because they’re further along in their growth and will produce fruit earlier. 

Many growers select this growing method because it’s familiar and easy. This option is perfect for beginners as you treat them the same as other plugs you’re used to. 

Runners (Stolons)

A close-up of a potted strawberry plant showcasing lush green leaves and a delicate white flower; beside it, a small potted plant holds a budding strawberry seedling, all placed on a brown table. Pot up runners annually to maintain a perpetual strawberry supply.

Healthy, established plants will send out runners to pass on their lineage. Runners are similar in functionality to suckers of tomato plants, running horizontally to the soil surface. Nodes emerge from the new runner stem and set roots to create a sister strawberry plant. To use runners to propagate new plants, gently dig them up once they’ve taken hold of the soil. Fill a small pot with nutrient-dense, well-draining potting soil. Secure the runner into the soil with a hook and avoid burying the crown. Water it well. 

Place the pot out of direct sun for a few days as it begins to root and stabilize. Keep it moist but not water-logged. Once new growth emerges and the plant seems healthy, incorporate it into your strawberry plot and watch it thrive. 

Potting up runners each year and adding them to your plot as you remove spent plants will create a strawberry loop, providing a consistent supply of delicious berries as old plants peter out. 

Starting Strawberry Plants from Seed

A close-up of a hand holding strawberry seeds above a table with small pots filled with brown soil, prepared for planting.Keep them in a warm place until outdoor conditions permit.

This method requires more patience and time, but it is fun to start ‘Allstar’ from seed for an experiment. Purchase seeds or collect them from fresh strawberries by mashing the fruits and straining the seeds out. Clean them well and allow them to dry for several weeks. Sow seeds in seed-starting mix and place the tray into the refrigerator for proper germination. Keep the soil moist and leave the tray alone for four to six weeks. Germination should occur in one to six weeks after you remove the tray from the refrigerator. 

Once you’ve germinated the seeds, the rest is a cakewalk! Treat them like any other plant started from seed, monitor water and nutrients, and provide proper sunlight. Grow in a warm area until outside temperatures allow. Harden off before transplanting to avoid transplant shock. 


Strawberries are sensitive to cold temperatures, and frost can damage young transplants. While dormant bare roots can tolerate a frost, wait until after your last frost date to plant plugs. 


Rows of strawberry plants in soil beds covered with black fabric to prevent weeds. The plants and soil are moist from recent watering.Arrange freely or in rows based on your preference.

Space your plants at 12 to 24 inches apart. If you plan to allow runners to take hold in future years, allow more space. Avoid overcrowding and provide proper airflow for the healthiest plants. How you position the spaces depends on your growing setup and aesthetic preference. You may stagger the plants or line them up. 

Transplanting Plugs or Plants

A close-up of a young strawberry plant featuring vibrant green leaves, growing in rich brown soil.Ensure plugs are planted shallowly with roots exposed for successful growth.

Plugs and plants don’t require as much care when transplanting as bare roots do, so while you should handle them with some care, they can tolerate light roughhousing.

Use a tape measure to plot out your spacing. Before getting started, lay plugs or plants near each place. Open a hole using a trowel or your hand about the same depth as the plug and slightly wider. Plant plugs just deep enough that the crown is visible, with bare roots and plants.

Place the transplant in the hole, gently fill it with native soil, and tamp it down. Avoid too much soil compaction. Irrigate immediately and often during the first few weeks. 

Transplanting Bare Roots

A close-up of a bare root strawberry plant with a small leaf, nestled in soil adorned with white fertilizer granules.Bare roots arrive dormant, minimizing transplant shock.

Plant bare roots upon arrival, or refrigerate them until you can. Keep the roots loosely wrapped in plastic and moist. Revive roots by soaking them in clean, cool water and letting them sit while preparing your garden plot. 

Dig a shallow hole, then place the crown root side down. Fan the roots out and cover them with native soil. Leaving the top of the crown slightly exposed and aligned with the soil surface, gently tamp it down. Irrigate immediately and optionally, feed them lightly. 

Note that bare roots are dormant when you receive them, significantly reducing the risk of transplant shock. However, bare roots will take longer to grow and produce foliage and flowers than plugs and plants. 

Common Problems

‘Allstar’ is aptly named for its ability to ward off certain diseases, vigor, and productivity. However, there can be some potential problems. Here are a few. 


A close-up of a slug crawling on a strawberry fruit; the slug is brown with visible mucus trail, contrasting against the red fruit skin.Each pest requires specific strategies for control.

Strawberries are delicious, so needless to say, many critters and creatures want to get their hands and mouths on them. 

Sprinkle Diatomaceous Earth on leaves to deter slugs. If your plot is small enough, try trapping slugs with beer. To keep them in check, create an environment that attracts natural predators of slugs like ground beetles, toads, and fireflies. Plant chervil or parsley nearby as a trap crop. They can’t resist them!

If you experience rabbit pressure in your area, consider surrounding your strawberry patch with a cage. You can make a DIY version with PVC pipe and hardware cloth.

Hoop your plants and install bird netting upon planting to block them out completely. Avoid any loose material to keep birds and other wildlife from getting caught.

Scouting early for thrips is critical to keep their populations under control. If you suspect them, shake strawberry leaves and flowers over a laminated paper and count how many land. Over two per flower is above the acceptable threshold.

Biological controls include introducing or attracting predatory Orius bugs and predator mites (Amblyseius swirskii and cucumeris) and will only be effective if populations are small. You can purchase these in strips and place them near your strawberry patch. Note the insects will leave if there isn’t enough food to stick around. Organic controls include neem oil, among others. Follow application instructions on product packaging.

Slow-moving and not particularly damaging to strawberry plants, aphids are more of an annoyance. Insecticidal soap or a blast of cold water will remove them. To help control populations, add beneficial nematodes or foster predatory insects with plantings.

SWD is a small fruit fly that lays eggs inside slightly unripe fruit. The hatching out of the larvae coincides with the ripening of fruits, causing high levels of destruction by softening and rotting the fruit. Harvest often to help control the fruits available for egg laying. Insecticides are available, but they are damaging to pollinators and it may be better to simply remove damaged fruits.

These underground microscopic pests can cause problems at the root-level, reducing the ability for your strawberries to take in nutrients. One of the best prevention methods is not planting your crops where you know they exist. In temperate seasons, you can apply two treatments of beneficial nematodes two weeks apart to take them out.

If you garden along woodland edges and near wild areas, you may have to deal with strawberry weevils. These lay eggs in the soil near strawberry plants, and their larvae feed as they mature. To reduce their presence, monitor your plants closely, eliminate nearby perennial weeds (which can be a food source), and use permethrin sprays in large infestations.

Motion-activated sprinklers, cages, fencing, companion planting, and spraying strong-scented repellents are among the most common and effective deer control methods.


A close-up of a yellowish-orange strawberry with visible rot, standing out against a blurred background of healthy red strawberries.Manage disease risks with rotation, cleanliness, and fungicides.

‘Allstar’ is moderately resistant to powdery mildew, Red stele, and leaf scorch but is susceptible to fungal diseases like gray mold, crown and root rot, leaf blight, and Verticillium wilt. Proper crop rotation and spacing, garden tidiness, purchasing seeds and plants from reputable sources, close monitoring, and fungicides when necessary will help reduce disease risk. 

Sudden Collapse or Death 

A close-up of a young strawberry plant showing signs of red stele and crown rot, surrounded by wilted plants and scattered debris in the background. Strawberry plants often suffer from crown rot.

Crown rot is a common issue with strawberry plants caused by one of three types of crown rot—Anthracnose, Red stele (although ‘Allstar’ is known for its resistance), and Macrophomina. If you notice discoloration, drying leaves, stunted growth, or black lesions seemingly overnight, your plants may be experiencing crown rot. Possible culprits are overwatering, pathogens from external sources, root or crown rot, humidity, Verticillium wilt, and lack of proper airflow. 


A close-up of strawberry plants, some unhealthy and wilted from overwatering and disease, growing in soil covered with black plastic.Use compost to improve soil drainage and prevent waterlogging.

Overwatering may result in crown or root rot and yellowing leaves. Monitor moisture levels using a meter or place your fingers into the soil several inches.

If soil is present when you remove them, the soil at the root level is moist. If not, it’s time to water. Ensure your soil is appropriately draining during times of above-average rainfall. Compost will help keep soil nice and loose and allow drainage. 


A close-up of an old, sick strawberry leaf, showing signs of overfertilization, held delicately by a hand wearing a white glove.Strategically manage nutrients to boost strawberry yields.

When it comes to fertilizing, more is not better. While strawberries require lots of nutrients for peak performance, overfertilization, mainly too much nitrogen, can lead to abundant foliage but not flowers and fruit. Test your soil often and follow a regime to adjust nutrient levels as needed. Follow the instructions on the packaging.

‘Allstar’ Must-Haves and Growing Tips

  • Provide full sun and well-draining soil.
  • Water consistently, but avoid overwatering, which can cause root rot.
  • Remove mulch in the summer to allow the soil to breathe.
  • Prepare for and monitor for pests often and take action. Use insect netting if necessary, and get creative with your critter control.
  • Remove runners in the first few years, then pot them up to create a strawberry loop.
  • Harvest often in the early morning or evening.

Frequently Asked Questions 

Companion planting offers many benefits, including increased yields, reduced pests, and improved flavor and soil biology. There are lots of options for strawberry companion planting. Try sweet alyssum to attract beneficial insects, French marigolds to repel bunnies, whiteflies, root-knot nematodes, or phacelia to help loosen the soil and serve as a live mulch.

Red leaves during the growing season may be a sign of disease or that you’re underfeeding your plants. However, if fall is approaching, this may simply be a part of the plant’s natural cycle.

Yes! Strawberries make excellent container plants. They need proper sunlight and fertilizer; removing runners will yield the best results.

Final Thoughts

‘Allstar’ strawberries are among the most grown varieties for many reasons. It’s easy to get started, low-maintenance, and will reward you with plentiful harvests year after year when properly maintained

Be proactive with pest control so you won’t be chasing your tail all season. Keep your gardens tidy, scout often, and ensure proper sunlight and watering. Strawberry season, here you come! 

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