Fragaria virginiana

Virginia Strawberry

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Description

A wild strawberry native to most of North America (despite its name), Fragaria virginiana is one of four strawberry species native to Oregon. The modern domesticated strawberry is descended from a hybrid of this species and another Oregon native, F. chiloensis.

Virginia Strawberry is a low-growing, perennial groundcover that sends up trifoliate leaves with toothed margins that are slightly more blue-green than other native strawberries. It blooms with five- or six-petaled small, white flowers that develop into red edible berries. The berries are much smaller than the domesticated strawberries we’re used to, but are very tasty nonetheless. Lots of birds and insects love the berries too. This plant spreads quickly by stolons (above-ground runners), so give it plenty of space or keep it in a container. This species does well in full sun and occurs naturally in meadows and grasslands. It makes a great groundcover or “green mulch” in the landscape, and competes well with (or even complements) taller plants in a meadowscape.