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Common Herb Species of the Northwest Forest

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SHRUBS

GRAMINOIDS

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Terminology | Pictorial

   
Fragaria vesca
Woodland Strawberry
Rosaceae (Rose Family)

Description

General - a low perennial with scaly rhizome and long, slender trailing stolons; leaf stalks and flower stems greenish or very lightly tinged reddish purple, lightly to densely hairy.

Woodland Strawberry Leaves - basal; compound with 3 leaflets; each leaflet ovate with straight, prominent veins and no individual leafstalks, somewhat pointed at the tip; margins appearing roughly toothed with the terminal tooth protruding past the two adjacent lateral teeth.

Flowers - 3 to 15 on stems that are 5 - 25 cm long (usually longer than leaves); white; 5 petals, 8 - 11 mm long.

Fruit -a small, delicious, red berry with seeds distributed on the surface, unlike most fruit with pits; ripening in July.

Habitat

Dry to moist open woods, streambanks, and meadows; widespread across boreal forest, north and west to southern N.W.T. and eastern B.C. Much less common than Fragaria virginiana (Common Strawberry).

Notes

The name 'strawberry' from the Anglo-Saxon streowberie, could derive from the dried runners being scattered on the ground, or from the Old English word for straw, which also meant 'mote' or 'chaff' - here in reference to the small achenes embedded in the surface of the berry.

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