On 20 November I planted about 90 strawberry plants in the potager. Most of them were a gift from Nicole at Les Limornières and the rest I bought for about 13c a pied* from our orchard neighbour's market stall.
Simon can't understand why I planted so many and can't imagine what we will do with all the strawberries. He's also annoyed that I didn't discuss where I was going to plant them, as I have planted them in the wrong place, in a bed that was intended as part of our rotation system. They'll have to be moved in a couple of year's time anyway, when they need dividing.
I have no worries about using them. They'll freeze, and I remember one summer in the 1980s, housesitting for my parents in Australia and having to deal with mountains of strawberries. Homemade strawberry icecream is a very good thing in these situations.
I've mulched them heavily with some of the 60 year old straw that came from our garage (ex-stable) loft. This level of mulch would harbour slugs in the summer, I am sure, but it will have rotted down a lot by then, and in the meantime, the little strawberry runners are snug and protected from the cold and can get on with establishing themselves before winter really sets in. We've mulched the newly planted onion and garlic similarly, in the rows alongside the strawberries, with the idea that the new growth will be protected from frost and they will get a head start in the spring.
I've also planted an autumn fruiting rasperry (Autumn Bliss), a tayberry (by far the best of the raspberry / blackberry hybrids) and a red currant (London Market). We bought these at Jardiland on the outskirts of Châtellerault. This was our first visit to a proper garden centre in France and I was impressed to find that they had tayberries, as they are not that common even in the UK where they were developed to take advantage of Scotland's relatively cool but long summer days.
*literally, 'foot', but the term is used to describe small plants for planting on.