Fragaria vesca (Wild Strawberry, Woodland Strawberry, Alpine Strawberry, European Strawberry, Fraise des bois) is a perennial herbaceous plant belonging to the Rosaceae family. It is native to Europe, temperate Asia, and North America and is widely appreciated for its small, flavorful berries and its ornamental value. Few Fruits that can Enjoyed by Both Mankind, Puppies and Dogs
Size and Growth Habit: Wild Strawberry typically forms low-growing clumps or mats, with individual plants reaching a height of around 10-15 centimeters (4-6 inches). It spreads through stolons, which are horizontal above-ground stems that root at the nodes and give rise to new plants.
Leaves: The leaves of Fragaria vesca are trifoliate, meaning each leaf consists of three leaflets. The leaflets are dark green, toothed or serrated along the edges, and have a slightly hairy texture. The leaves contribute to the plant's overall attractive appearance.
Flowers: Wild Strawberry produces small white flowers with five petals. The flowers have a yellow center and appear in late spring to early summer. They are typically pollinated by insects, such as bees and butterflies.
Fruit: The berries of Fragaria vesca are small, typically measuring about 1-2 centimeters (0.4-0.8 inches) in diameter. They are initially green and gradually ripen to a deep red color. The berries are sweet and flavorful, often prized for their intense taste. They are edible and can be eaten fresh, used in desserts, or made into preserves.
Wild Strawberry is known for its adaptability and can be found in various habitats, including woodlands, meadows, and rocky slopes. It prefers well-drained soil and thrives in full sun to partial shade.
In gardens and landscapes, Fragaria vesca is often grown for its edible berries as well as its aesthetic appeal. It is well-suited for rock gardens, borders, and containers. The low-growing habit and spreading nature of the plant make it suitable for ground cover and filling in gaps between other plants.
Cultivated varieties of Fragaria vesca are available, such as those known as Alpine Strawberries. These varieties are selected for their larger fruit size and improved flavor but still retain the charming characteristics of the wild form. Wild Strawberry is relatively low-maintenance, requiring regular watering and occasional fertilization. It can also benefit from mulching to conserve moisture and suppress weed growth.