Amazing facts about Strawberry
Strawberry is a type of herbaceous plant that belongs to the rose family. It originates from temperate region of Northern hemisphere, but it can be found around the world today. Wild types of strawberries were cultivated and consumed until the 18th century, when modern type of strawberry was created (via selective breeding). Strawberry is cultivated mainly as a source of food. Besides that, strawberry has applications in medical, pharmaceutical and cosmetic industry.
Interesting Strawberry Facts:
- Each strawberry plant consists of root, crown, runners (stolons), leaves and daughter plants. Plant grows in length by producing new runners that arise from a crown.
- Compound leaves consist of three leaflets. They are green, hairy and toothed on the edges.
- Strawberry produces white or pinkish flowers that grow between the stem and leaves. Flowers can be seen even when fruit (both immature and ripe) already exist. One plant usually bears 30 berries at each moment.
- Strawberries are the first fruits that appear in the spring. Another unique feature of strawberries is that (unlike other fruit) they bear seed on the outer side of the fruit. One strawberry has around 200 seeds.
- Even though strawberries are known as “berries” they belong to the group of fruit that produce miniature seeds known as achenes. Red part of the strawberry is not “true fruit”. It is enlarged flower stem.
- Strawberry can be propagated via seed, by planting one fruit in the ground. More frequently, strawberries are propagated via runners.
- Ripening of strawberries stops immediately after removal from the plant. Strawberries are usually harvested with part of the stem, which prolongs freshness of the fruit.
- Ripe strawberries are bright red colored, juicy and have pleasant, sweet taste. Strawberries are rich source of vitamins C, K, B6, B9, potassium and dietary fibers. Eight strawberries provide 140% of daily recommended dose of vitamin C (they contain more vitamin C than orange of an average size).
- Strawberries can be consumed raw or in the form of desserts (cakes, milkshakes, ice-creams…) juices and jams. French people believe that strawberries have aphrodisiac properties. That’s why newlyweds in France eat thick soup made of strawberries for the breakfast.
- Artificial strawberry flavor is often used in confectionery industry.
- Ancient Romans used strawberries in treatment of melancholy, fever, kidney stones, inflammation, disorders of liver and spleen and many other diseases.
- Raw strawberries were popular among Native Americans. They also used them for the preparation of strawberry-flavored cornbread.
- Recent medical studies indicate that fresh strawberries have beneficial effects on the human health. They reduce high blood pressure and inflammations and show antitumor properties (prevent cancer development).
- Some people cannot eat strawberries due to allergy. Symptoms of allergy can range from mild (hives on the skin) to severe, such as anaphylactic shock.
- Strawberries are perennial plants that are able to produce fruits up to 5 years.