Strawberries

Family: Rosaceae

Countries: Americas, Chile, North America, South America

Strawberries, also known by their botanical name of Fragaria x ananassa, are delicious, easy to grow fruits.

Alpine strawberries, which are known botanically as Fragaria vesca, are small plants, which produce tiny, but delicious, often intensely flavoured fruits.  Alpine strawberries are the most shade tolerant of all strawberries, they grow well in shade, fruiting intermittently, from May until October.

The next group of strawberries, the ‘Summer Bearers’, produce much larger fruits – like those we see in the supermarkets.  These strawberries ripen from May until autumn, depending on the cultivar and the growing conditions the plant experiences.

Perpetual strawberries produce their fruit intermittently, from May until October, again this depends on the cultivar and the growing conditions that the plant experiences.

Strawberries are best grown in full sunshine or partial shade.  Strawberries can be successfully grown in containers, or planted directly outside.  If you wish to achieve an earlier harvest of strawberries, you could plant strawberries undercover, inside polytunnels or glasshouses.  A word of warning though – although early strawberries are indeed a delight, I don’t find strawberry plants that have been hurried along in this manner to be good quality, lasting plants, so once they have fruited, I have always replaced these plants with new ones for the following season.

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