So let’s try this again.

In the midst of so much other work in the yard and around the house, I got around to “repotting” the strawberries that I had in a 24-pocket shoe organizer last year.

I removed the organizer and laid it out flat in the middle of the mini greenhouse in November. When the roof of that plastic structure collapsed, the strawberries were eventually covered by several inches of snow (in addition to being exposed to the subzero temperatures we had here in subarctic Wisconsin).

Still, by April, it was obvious that many of the plants had survived. There were still a lot of green leaves under the snow, in fact. It was weeks before I could get the organizer off of the ground, though, because the cycle of thawing and freezing left the fabric stuck to the soil. Since a few pockets ripped in the removal process, I decided I’d transplant the living plants to the original organizer from 2012. There are only 12 pockets on that one, but it will be easier to manage.

I cut out several milk carton panels (who knew that each panel would fit almost perfectly inside a shoe pocket?) and placed two in each pocket. This will hopefully help retain moisture that would be lost to wind and heat. In between each panel, I poured in a trowel’s worth of potting soil — about a third of each pocket’s volume. I then took the best-looking surviving strawberries, loosened the roots a bit, and dropped them into the pockets. I topped off each pocket with a bit more soil, then added a light solution of organic fertilizer (let’s say four ounces of granular fertilizer dissolved in a gallon of water).