Features Strawberry Albion
Modern breeders and genetics have learned to breed strawberry varieties that are distinguished by excellent yield indicators, unpretentiousness in growing and wonderful taste properties of berries. Among these varieties, gardeners note strawberries Albion. What are the features of the described fruit culture, and how to grow it correctly - later in the article.
Description of the variety and its characteristics
Strawberry Albion is a remodeling, that is, capable of multiple fruit delivery in one season, culture, commercial purpose, which was removed by scientists from California in 2006. The genetic basis of the plant is the large-fruited varieties of Cleri and Honey, from which Albion received strong immunity, resistance to various weather conditions, excellent yield and dimensionality of berries.
Albion is a fairly powerful, medium-tall plant, the bush of which can reach a height of up to 20 cm. The green mass of the culture is represented by numerous large leaves of a dark green color, which have a smooth, shiny surface. During flowering, persistent, non-lodging peduncles are formed on strawberries, consisting of white flowers with a pleasant floral aroma.
Albion fruits are presented in the form of large, oblong, heart-shaped berries, weighing 30-50 g, saturated red color, which have a shiny surface. The flesh is bright pink in color, with a high juice content, quite dense and fleshy, has a delicate sugar flavor and a light aroma of strawberries. As a rule, the berries ripen from the tip to the base, while, with incomplete ripening, a white color is observed near the sepals.
Important! Sugar content of strawberries will depend on the weather conditions of the region: with sufficient humidity and lighting, the fruits have a sweeter taste.
Gardeners note that Albion reveals its maximum taste when cultivated in the southern regions. The berries are quite dense, transportable, can tolerate transportation over long distances, do not crumple and do not let juice in.
Beginning of fruiting
The fruiting of the crop starts a year after planting a seedling or sowing seeds, however, the yield at this time rarely exceeds 300 g of fruit from one bush. In the future, indicators will depend on the conditions of cultivation and care.
Pollination and productivity
During the summer season, strawberries bear fruit several times, while the first fruits are ready for harvest in the first decade of June. The last time the harvest is carried out in the second half of October, right up to the first frosts.
Peak yield falls in August. Albion is a fairly productive variety. Depending on the weather characteristics of the growing region and the conditions of care, 0.5-2 kg of berries can be collected from one plant.
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Resistance to climatic conditions
The Albion variety was created by breeders from the United States of America specifically for cultivation in a mild, warm and humid climate. That is why, the most suitable regions for plant cultivation in the Russian Federation are southern. In other areas, cultivation in a greenhouse is recommended.
Strawberries are characterized by low resistance to frost, negatively reacts to drought and excessive excess moisture. With a moisture deficit, a small number of ovaries are observed, with an excess - a decrease in the taste of the fruit, loss of sugar content, the formation of water content.
At the same time, the culture negatively refers to high temperature indicators, above + 30 ° C. With intense heat, productivity decreases significantly, or fruiting ceases completely.
The fruits of Albion are quite large, very juicy, have excellent taste. The tasting committee rated the strawberries of the described variety for the maximum number of points - 5. The berries are characterized by a dense structure, excellent keeping quality and transportability. That is why strawberries are often grown commercially for sale.
The berries are magnificent in fresh form, they are widely used in the culinary field. They are suitable for preparing various dishes: desserts, pastries, sauces, preserves, jams, however, during heat treatment they lose their appearance and some of their useful qualities. Delicious juices, compotes, nectars, smoothies, alcoholic and non-alcoholic drinks are prepared from the fruits.
Read also our e-magazine on strawberry cultivation.
No less popular is the use of strawberries in cosmetology. It is indicated for all skin types, helps to get rid of peeling, age spots, irritation, fine wrinkles, acne and blackheads. The pulp is added to the composition of various masks, which have a tonic, whitening, tightening, soothing effect.
As noted above, the Albion variety is a representative of the southern latitudes, therefore it is intended for cultivation in a warm, humid and temperate climate.
Planting and reproduction
Correct and timely planting guarantees a good survival rate of the crop and its good fruiting. Seedlings can be planted in early spring or late autumn, depending on the preferences of the gardener and the climatic conditions of the region. However, experienced gardeners note that during autumn planting, plant yields are higher.
What place is suitable for planting strawberries
It is very important to prepare loose, nutritious and light soil for the culture, as it is quite demanding on the composition of the soil mixture.
If the planting of seedlings is planned to be done in the fall, then in spring the land is enriched with humus or rotted manure.
When planting in spring, organic fertilizers are applied, on the contrary, in late autumn. A few days before planting in the soil, the seedlings are taken out to a cool place so that they are tempered.
Immediately before planting, the root roots of the crop are shortened to 8-10 cm, paying special attention to those that have reached a sufficiently large size. Also, flower stalks are removed from the seedling, which allows the plant to take root faster and denser.
How to plant seedlings
Before planting, in order to enhance the growth of seedlings and its good rooting, the soil is additionally enriched with minerals: superphosphate - 100 g per 1 m² of area, potassium salt - 60 g per 1 m².
Read how to make a strawberry bed.
The technology of planting seedlings includes a number of mandatory measures:
- holes are made in the ground, the interval between which is at least 30 cm, and between the rows - 40 cm;
- A sapling is planted in a recess, sprinkled with earth so that the "core" remains on the surface;
- plantings abundantly watered;
- all antennae and peduncles are removed;
- the soil around the seedlings is mulched with organic materials.
When carrying out work on a sunny day, planting is shaded. When planting seedlings in autumn, they make a special shelter that protects the plant from the first frosts.
When growing strawberries in industrial plants, before planting them on the beds, they organize a drip irrigation system, form ridges from the ground, which are covered with agrofibre. With this method of planting, the first crop can be harvested 7-10 days earlier.
Did you know? Despite the fact that strawberries have a sweet taste, the sugar content in its pulp is extremely low. Surprisingly, the lemon has more sugar than this juicy berry.
Strawberry is considered a fairly demanding crop, which requires high-quality and timely care for high-quality fruiting. That is why novice gardeners should know everything about it, and pay special attention to the techniques of agricultural technology.
The most important step in taking care of Albion is watering. The culture prefers regular and plentiful hydration, which is carried out daily in dry summers, in the morning or evening hours. Many summer residents organize drip irrigation of the plant, which frees the gardener from irrigation activities every day.
It is very important to take care of moisturizing the strawberries in certain cycles of its development: in the flowering phase, during the formation of the fruits. For 1 square. m. need about 20-25 liters of warm, standing water.
Important! For watering, you can not use cold water, since it has a negative effect on the root system of the plant.
The level of soil moisture should be carefully monitored, since excess moisture, as well as deficiency, equally negatively affects the crop. In the first case, the fruits become watery and loose, in the second - the bushes fade.
Variety Albion responds well to dressing. Active fruiting 3-4 times per season deprives the plant of vitality, so it is fed with minerals and organic preparations throughout the growing season.
For feeding, manure, humus or vermicompost is most often used. In early spring, wood ash is added to the organic compounds, and in the summer, minerals are used.
During flowering and the formation of ovaries, foliar supplements are supplemented with iron-enriched preparations. In some cases, the bed in the middle of summer is treated with a solution of boric acid, which helps to increase productivity.
See also: feeding strawberries after harvest.
Weeding and cultivation
Mandatory strawberry care procedures include weeding and loosening the soil. The second event allows you to enrich the soil with oxygen and nutrients, thereby activating the growth of the root system of the culture. It is optimal to cultivate before watering, after which the soil around the bushes is mulched with a layer of straw, sawdust, and hay.
We must not forget about the removal of parasitic plants, which take away plant nutrients from the plant and inhibit its full development. Weed weeding is carried out regularly, throughout the season, as necessary.
Protection against diseases and pests
Strawberry Albion is characterized by a fairly high immunity and is rarely affected by diseases. However, it can “catch” a fungal infection from other plants, for example, brown spotting, which manifests itself in the form of brown spots on the leaves.
Learn more about how to process strawberries from pests and diseases.
Modern fungicidal preparations: Fitosporin, Topaz, Gliokladin, and also a solution of copper sulfate help fight fungal ailments.
The main pests of Albion are ticks and aphids. The mite can be controlled by spraying the plants before flowering and after the formation of berries “Karbofos” or 70% sulfur solution. Treatment of the culture with a soap solution helps with aphids.
For the prevention of diseases, an iodine solution prepared from 10 liters of water and 30 drops of iodine has good effectiveness. It also allows you to increase the immunity of strawberries and its resistance to the negative effects of external factors.
Strawberry is a heat-loving plant that has low resistance to frost. That is why, it must be carefully covered before wintering.
Work on preparing the plant for winter begins in early autumn:
- in September, the soil is loosened, deepening by 5-6 cm;
- after collecting the last fruits, the bed is mulched with a 5-centimeter layer of straw, sawdust or peat;
- in November, plantings are covered with spruce branches;
- in winter, when snow falls, the spruce branches are covered with straw or manure from above.
In early spring, as soon as the snow melts, the shelter is removed.
Also learn how to grow strawberries in winter.
Harvesting, transportability and storage
As noted above, harvesting is carried out in waves: the first time in June, the second in July, the third in mid-August and the last in October. The best time to pick berries is morning or evening, in dry, warm weather. The berries are harvested fully ripened, as unripe greenish fruits are devoid of sweetness.
The strawberries are torn off with the hands of the stalk and immediately stored in small wooden containers. Unlike other varieties, Albion berries are allowed to be laid in several layers, as they have high elasticity, do not deform and do not let juice under load.
As befits a commercial variety, Albion berries are characterized by excellent keeping quality and transportability. They are ways to withstand transportation over long distances without losing their presentation and shape. Store fruits in the refrigerator, on the bottom shelf, designed for fruits and vegetables. In such conditions, they can last up to 10 days.
Strawberries Albion is considered one of the best varieties for industrial cultivation, in which all processes are automated. But when cultivating the plant “by hand”, summer residents will have to work hard throughout the growing season.
The culture is rather capricious, needs plentiful and regular watering, high-quality top dressing. However, all the efforts of gardeners will be more than rewarded with a decent harvest of tasty, juicy and very healthy berries.