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Fragaria vesca 'Semperflorens' - L.                
                 
Common Name Alpine Strawberry
Family Rosaceae
USDA hardiness 4-8
Known Hazards None known
Habitats Woodland and damp undergrowth[7].
Range Most of Europe, including Britain, to temperate Asia.
Edibility Rating  
Medicinal Rating  
Care
Fully Hardy Moist Soil Semi-shade Full sun

Summary

Fragaria vesca


(c) 2010 Ken Fern & Plants For A Future
Fragaria vesca
(c) 2010 Ken Fern & Plants For A Future
   
Physical Characteristics
 icon of manicon of flower
Fragaria vesca 'Semperflorens' is a PERENNIAL growing to 0.3 m (1ft) by 0.3 m (1ft in).
It is hardy to zone (UK) 5 and is not frost tender. It is in flower from May to November, and the seeds ripen from Jun to November. The flowers are hermaphrodite (have both male and female organs) and are pollinated by Bees, flies, lepidoptera.Suitable for: light (sandy), medium (loamy) and heavy (clay) soils, prefers well-drained soil and can grow in heavy clay soil. Suitable pH: acid, neutral and basic (alkaline) soils and can grow in very alkaline soils.
It can grow in semi-shade (light woodland) or no shade. It prefers moist soil.

Synonyms
F. alpina.
Habitats
Woodland Garden Sunny Edge; Dappled Shade; Cultivated Beds;
Edible Uses
Edible Parts: Fruit;  Leaves.
Edible Uses: Coffee;  Tea.

Fruit - raw, cooked or made into preserves[183]. Sweet and succulent with an exquisite taste, they are far superior to the cultivated strawberry[K]. The fruit is fairly small, up to 15mm in diameter, but it is produced abundantly from early summer until the frosts of autumn[K]. Young leaves - raw or cooked[52, 105]. Added to salads or used as a potherb[183]. The fresh or dried leaves are used as a tea substitute[7, 177, 183]. The root has been used as a coffee substitute in India[240].
Medicinal Uses


Plants For A Future can not take any responsibility for any adverse effects from the use of plants. Always seek advice from a professional before using a plant medicinally.

Astringent;  Diuretic;  Laxative;  Tonic.

The leaves and the fruit are astringent, diuretic, laxative and tonic[4, 9, 222]. The leaves are mainly used, though the fruits are an excellent food to take when feverish and are also effective in treating rheumatic gout[4]. A slice of strawberry is also excellent when applied externally to sunburnt skin[4]. A tea made from the leaves is a blood tonic[222]. It is used in the treatment of chilblains[53] and also as an external wash on sunburn[222]. The leaves are harvested in the summer and dried for later use[238]. The fruits contain salicylic acid and are beneficial in the treatment of liver and kidney complaints, as well as in the treatment of rheumatism and gout[244]. The roots are astringent and diuretic[4, 222]. A decoction is used internally in the treatment of diarrhoea and chronic dysentery[4, 244]. Externally it is used to treat chilblains and as a throat gargle[244]. The roots are harvested in the autumn and dried for later use[238].
Other Uses
Compost;  Teeth.

The flowers are an alternative ingredient of 'Quick Return' herbal compost activator[32]. This is a dried and powdered mixture of several herbs that can be added to a compost heap in order to speed up bacterial activity and thus shorten the time needed to make the compost[K]. The fruit is used as a tooth cleaner[4]. The fresh fruit removes stains from teeth if it is allowed to remain for about 5 minutes[4]. The fruit is also used cosmetically in skin-care creams[7]. It tones and whitens the skin, combats wrinkles, lightens freckles, soothes sunburn and whitens the teeth[244].
Cultivation details
Prefers a fertile, well-drained, moisture retentive soil in a sunny position[27, 200]. Tolerates semi-shade though fruit production will be reduced when plants are growing in such a position. Prefers some shade according to some reports[3, 31]. Plants are often found on clay soils[31] and on soils overlying chalk[13]. Alpine strawberries appreciate a mulch of pine or spruce leaves[18]. The alpine strawberry is often cultivated in the garden for its edible fruit. This fruit is fairly small but exquisitely flavoured and is freely produced from June to November. There are some named varieties[183]. It is not very feasible to grow this plant on a commercial scale because it is very labour intensive to pick and it is also hard to get the fruit to market in good quality. However, it is sometimes grown by specialised growers for the luxury market. The main drawback of growing this plant is that it tends to lose vigour after about 2 - 3 years, partly due to virus diseases and partly because the plant flowers and fruits so freely that it exhausts itself.
Propagation
Seed - sow early spring in a greenhouse. The seed can take 4 weeks or more to germinate. The seedlings are very small and slow-growing at first, but then grow rapidly. Prick them out into individual pots when they are large enough to handle and plant them out during the summer.
Related Plants
Latin NameCommon NameEdibility RatingMedicinal Rating
FragariaStrawberry, Beach strawberry, Pacific beach strawberry, Sandwich beach strawberry, Virginia strawber30
Fragaria bracteataWoodland Strawberry20
Fragaria californicaCalifornian Strawberry21
Fragaria chiloensisBeach Strawberry, Pacific beach strawberry, Sandwich beach strawberry21
Fragaria daltoniana 21
Fragaria iinumaeStrawberry20
Fragaria moschataHautbois Strawberry30
Fragaria nilgerrensis 20
Fragaria nipponica 20
Fragaria nubicolaIndian Strawberry21
Fragaria orientalis 30
Fragaria ovalisRocky Mountain Strawberry30
Fragaria vescaWild Strawberry, Woodland strawberry, California strawberry33
Fragaria virginianaScarlet Strawberry, Virginia strawberry32
Fragaria viridisGreen Strawberry30
Fragaria x ananassaStrawberry50
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Expert comment
 
      
Author
L.
Botanical References
200
Links / References
For a list of references used on this page please go here
Readers comment
 
Elizabeth H.
Steve Harris Mon Nov 18 03:14:18 2002
"The fruits contain salicylic acid and are beneficial in the treatment of liver and kidney complaints, as well as in the treatment of rheumatism and gout[244]. "

I don't think so. Salicylic acid and it's salts are containdicated in gout because they inhibit excretion of uric acid.

Elizabeth H.
Sat Apr 19 2008
everything i was looking for. cheers!!!!
Michael W.
Alpine strawberries are also known as fraises des bois. There are runnering varieties as well. There is some debate over their classification. Dec 31 2010 12:00AM
I have been collecting varieties of alpine strawberries for nearly 25 years. To date I have over 40 red, white and yellow fruiting varieties. I sell these varieties as seeds and plants and have sold fruit to upscale restaurants in the past. I will provide the link to my site which is an informational site.
fraises des bois
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Subject : Fragaria vesca 'Semperflorens'  
 

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