Liv Fruitful with Livi Lou! She is currently breeding strawberries, developing a garden product, trialing plants and researching the history of heirloom fruit varieties. She writes about unique perennials and fruit plants, so that you can grow an ornamental fruit garden.

Recent Blog Posts

Mar 12
Timeline: Historic Apple Collection  

Oct 04
The Ultimate Crop-Cage  

Aug 09
Summer Photos  

Jun 26
New Berry Varieties  

May 28
Honey Bees: The Queen Signal  

May 01
Spring Annuals & Perennials  

Mar 31
What’s the shuck?  

Mar 19
The Emotional Benefit of Trees   (2 comments)




Theme Announcement: Febru-BERRY!
by Livi Lou - posted 02/01/16


It’s the snowiest month of the year,

but have no fear, for spring is near…

And in the spring, comes new growth

and berry plants have the most

antioxidants, nutrients and taste,

so let’s start planning your gardening space!


Each Friday in February you will learn about:





The world's first dwarf thorn-less raspberry bush.






  A unique colored and flavored raspberry variety.





A sweet taswting dwarf blueberry bush.


Are these new varieties worth the valuable space in your garden? I've grown these varieties since 2014.  Learn through my experience!

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Strawberry Seedlings: The Best Indicator for Transplanting
by Livi Lou - posted 01/29/16

In three months, strawberry plants grown from seed will be ready for transplanting to the garden. There is plenty of information about seed starting—the key of which is often a humidity dome.  In this post, you will view photos of how strawberry seeds develop into seedlings and you will learn how to determine if these seedlings are ready for transplanting.


Healthy strawberry seeds will normally show signs of germination within 7-10 days of sowing.  Upon close inspection of these tiny seeds, you will first see the pointed tip become more pronounced. A few days later a root will emerge from this pointed tip.


Below are photos of emerging strawberry seedlings. Look closely and you will see the white roots.  The rest already have cotyledons (baby leaves).



The root will anchor into the soil and the green growth will continue to grow.  The first true sets of leaves will develop, and then the second set, third and so forth. Below is a photo with true leaves.  You can see the difference between true leaves and cotyledons.



Interestingly, as the strawberry seedling continues to grow, the leaves will start to become lobed and it will start to develop a crown.  This is the most fascinating stage!  From the crown, new roots will develop.



Once these new roots anchor the crown to the soil and you can gently flick the seedling with your finger and it does not flop over, it is then ready for transplanting.  This strong root system will increase the odds of being successfully transplanted.  Remember to adjust the seedlings to outdoor conditions by placing them in a sheltered area for a week before transplanting to the ground.


Of course, not many strawberry varieties are grown from seed.  Most are clonal cuttings from the mother plants.  Swallowtail’s online nursery is good source of several strawberry varieties that come from seed.*


Growing strawberry seeds is a fun experience, especially during the coldest months of winter when you are most eager for spring.  February is a great time to start so that the seedlings will be ready by May. 




   ~ Thanks for reading!


*Swallowtail lists their strawberry seeds under the Vegetable Seed category.

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Announcement: Posting Schedule
by Livi Lou - posted 01/25/16

On Fridays, new columns will be posted on the blog.  During ‘theme’ months there will be a posting on every Friday.  Otherwise, it will be the first and third Fridays of the month.

Any announcements such as posting schedule updates or the theme for the month will be listed on a Monday.  For example, February will be a theme month and the theme will be announced on Monday, February 1st.  The following Fridays of February will have the posts.



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