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Fragaria × vescana is a hybrid strawberry cultivar that was created in an effort to combine the best traits of the garden strawberry (Fragaria × ananassa), which has large berries and vigorous plants, with the woodland strawberry (Fragaria vesca), which has an exquisite flavour, but small berries.

This cross cannot take place naturally. Fragaria × ananassa has eight sets of chromosomes whereas Fragaria vesca has only two sets. Repeated attempts to cross these resulted in sterile offspring.

Researchers treated tissue from a Fragaria vesca plant with colchicine to create a mutant plant with four sets of chromosomes. This mutant was then crossed with a Fragaria × ananassa plant, and vigorous fertile offspring were obtained. The offspring were found to be decaploid, (having ten sets of chromosomes).

Fragaria × vescana is not yet commercially important, but remains under development. While the plants are vigorous like their F. × ananassa parents, and the berries have the excellent flavour of the F. vesca parents, the berries are still quite small.

F. × vescana cultivars

The following decaploid strawberries were released by the Swedish breeding program at Balsgård:

  • ‘Annelie’ (1977)
  • ‘Sara’ (1988) — ‘Annelie’ × [(‘Sparkle’ × F. vesca 4×) open pollinated]
  • ‘Rebecka’ (1998) — (‘Fern’ × F. vesca 4×) × F. × ananassa F861502

German F. × vescana cultivars:

  • ‘Spadeka’ (1977)
  • ‘Florika’ (1989) — (‘Sparkle’ × F. vesca ‘Semperflorens’) × ‘Klettererdebeere H.’
Written on April 23rd, 2012 , Fruits Tags:

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