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Strawberries For Decoration

( Originally Published Early 1900's )

" Flowers may be secured from strawberries in a somewhat similar manner. They should not be dug up, however, until after the ground has been frozen for at least two weeks. There is not as much need with them to thaw out the ground gradually, and they may be placed directly in the sunlight. The strawberry plants will not bloom as soon as the pansies, but flowers you are sure to get. You may place one plant in a 6-inch pot or three plants may be crowded into an 8-inch pot. You will find that they make a rather pretty centerpiece for the table, with the vines almost completely hiding the pot and the white flowers standing out against the green background.

"Should you desire to bring one of these plants into bearing, you can do so only with diligence and care. In the first place, you must be sure to select plants having perfect flowers, such as the Senator Dunlap. Then when the plant is in first blossom it will be best to cross-fertilize. This is accomplished best by means of a fine-haired brush, preferably one of camel's hair. This is brushed over all the flowers in succession so that the pollen may thus he transferred from one flower to another.

It will help toward success with the strawberry plants if you feed them occasionally, say, every 15 days, with a weak solution of nitrate of soda, the material for which may be bought for 5 cents at any drug store, and every week with liquid cow manure."

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