We started getting handfuls of strawberries around the 25th-27th June but they really peaked this week (around 4th/5th July) and we picked three bowls full yesterday. I am not sure if this happened because it was the first week of July or because we had around 6 days in a row with sun.
Before that, it had been rainy and cold for about two weeks which meant that a lot of strawberries rotted before they ripened. I had been told that putting straw down underneath the plants would stop them from rotting and we put that in place in the beginning of June. It didn’t seem to stop the rotting entirely but I think it probably limited the scale so will definitely use straw again next year.
I wasn’t sure what had been eating the strawberries (besides the blackbird) until I caught the woodlice in the act! They have claimed a lot but I’m not yet sure how to keep them out- especially since they’re so important to rich soil. Learning: remove the straw after fruiting to cut down on rot.