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Zone
Zones 2B, 3-9, 14-24, 31-41, H2
Full Sun
Full
Regular Water
Moderate

Fragaria vesca

Alpine and Musk Strawberry
Rosaceae
Edible fruit, Perennials

FRAGARIA

The plants described here are grown for their ornamental qualities, although Fragaria vesca also produces delectable berries. Grow in well-drained soil. For strawberries grown strictly for their edible fruit, see Strawberry.

Fragaria vesca

Both alpine and musk strawberries are species that grow in the shade and produce small, distinctively flavored berries favored by connoisseurs.

Alpine strawberries. Also called fraise de bois, these European natives bear a small crop of tiny but fragrant, intensely delicious berries over a long summer season, but they have a shelf life that is measured in minutes or hours (which is why you rarely find them at produce markets). These are often grown as edgings for flower or herb beds (space plants 8–12 in. apart). You can get selections with red, white, or yellow-colored fruit. They don’t produce runners but may be grown from seed; bear the first year from seed sown early.

Musk strawberries. These shade-tolerant, June-bearing varieties from Italy are renowned for their intense aroma and flavor with hints of raspberry and pineapple. They’re much more cold-tolerant than alpine strawberries; you can even grow them in Alaska and Canada. ‘Profumata di Tortona’ and ‘Capron’ are popular.

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