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A widespread native plant, wild strawberries can be found in open fields, woodlands, and our own backyards.
The wild strawberry plant is considered a weed by some people. But it goes far beyond that.
Despite their little size, wild strawberries and European species hybrids—the store-bought variety—are a beloved delicacy for a wide variety of animals and birds.
Yes, wild strawberries are not harmful, contrary to popular belief. The berries are, in fact, edible and delicious.
It’s worth noting that the Indian mock strawberry, which has yellow blooms instead of white ones, produces berries that lack flavor.
Since wild strawberries create tidy clumps, they make good edging or ground cover options. A strawberry jar or a hanging basket can also be used to grow them.
Wild Strawberry Flower Varieties
One or more flower clusters can be found on a wild strawberry plant.
It is common for the wild strawberry flower to bloom in late spring or early summer and endure for around a month.
These flowers are followed by a typical red strawberry flavor. USDA Growing Zones 3–10 are suitable for these plants, and there are a variety of varieties to choose from, making it simple to pick one that is right for you.
It’s possible that you already have a patch of them growing on your land. Among the most popular are the following:
- Virginia wild strawberry, Fragaria virginiana – This is one of the most popular types of wild strawberry. It has light green leaves and small, tasty berries.
- Beach or coast strawberry, Fragaria chiloensis – The leaves of this variety are dark green and shiny. While its berries are also edible, they’re not as palatable.
- Woodland strawberry, Fragaria vesca – This type enjoys moist, shady conditions, and is normally found in wooded areas. Both the flowers and leaves are larger than other species and their foliage is bluish in color. The bigger berries are also quite delicious.
Cultivating Wild Strawberries
If you wish to grow wild strawberries, keep in mind that they are easy to grow and will eventually spread to make a lovely ground cover of about 6 to 12 inches (15 to 31 cm.) high.
Give it some room to breathe. A cool-season plant, it is active in the spring and fall, but becomes dormant in the summer and again during the fall.
For the most part, the wild strawberry bloom is a fan of full or partial sunlight. It prefers rich, moist soil, but may handle somewhat dry circumstances as well.
You can improve your soil’s drainage and clay content by adding organic matter.
Rhizomes and stolons are the means by which wild strawberries spread.
Runner strawberry plants can be simply moved from other sections of your land to the garden as they get larger and send up additional runners.
During the first few weeks of spring, divide and transfer the plants. Pull separate the crowns of the plants by lifting them.
Alternatively, you can buy plants from nurseries as well. The crowns of wild strawberry plants should be planted at ground level with plenty of water.
Composted compost and straw mulch can assist maintain moisture in the soil and keep the fruits clean.
Wild Strawberry Plant Care
Keeping wild strawberry plants hydrated during hot weather and when they’re producing fruit is all that’s required of them once they’ve established themselves.
Mulching with straw or loose leaves is an option in colder climates to help protect the plants.
Berry harvesting can begin in April and go through June. Similar to conventional strawberries, they are an excellent source of vitamin C and can be used in a variety of dishes, including cereal, pancakes, fruit salad, and sauces.
Gardeners and wildlife alike will appreciate the abundance of wild strawberries that can be grown in any backyard.
If the conditions are right, you may not need to propagate Wild Strawberry once it has been established.
If you remember to freeze the seed for three to four weeks before sowing it in the early spring in a greenhouse, growing Wild strawberries from seed shouldn’t be difficult.
For the seed to germinate, it can take up to four weeks or more. The seed can also be sown in the fall.
When the seedlings are large enough to handle, divide them into individual pots and transplant them to the garden in the summer.
Ideally, the runners should be detachable around July or August so that the plants can establish themselves for the next year.