This plant grows in meadows, open woodlands, along roadsides or in any well drained areas; it even grows to mid elevations, throughout BC.
It is spread by runners, which can be separated from the parent plant to form new plants.
Strawberry leaf tea provides a refreshing drink that is rich in vitamin C and minerals. For centuries, it has been used as a safe (though not necessarily effective) remedy for everything from insanity to tuberculosis. (Kershaw)
A related species, wood strawberry, Fragaria vesca, has flowers slightly higher than the leaves, and cone shaped fruits.
Habitat Information: Wild strawberries grow in open, well drained places in lowland to subalpine zones. These plants can be found in fields and meadows, in disturbed areas, and in open forest. The woodland strawberry (Fragaria vesca) frequently hybridizes with wild strawberry (Fragaria virginiana), making some plants difficult to distinguish to species.
Garden Uses: The common cultivated strawberry that is grown commercially and in gardens is considered a mix of both the wild strawberry, F. virginiana, and the west coast F. chiloensis. Introduced in France, and its lineage carried on by American horticulturists, it has been cultivated more than any other fruit of temperate zones. (Alberta Plant Watch)
Insect Relationships: The following study by Michigan State University detailed insects that are attracted to this plant ""Attracts the following pollinators: Medium numbers of Chalcidoidea. Small numbers of Salticidae, Braconidae, Empididae, Ichnuemonidae and Cynipoidea. Pests Attracted: Medium numbers of leafhoppers. Small numbers of thrips, froghoppers, weevils, aphids and root maggot flies. Bees attracted: Low numbers (less than 1 bee per meter square in a 30 second sample) of bees including sweat bees and small carpenter bees. (Michigan State University).
Traditional Edible, Medicinal Uses: Fruit, raw or cooked is sweet and highly flavourful. Leaves are a great tea subtitute. The whole plant is rich in vitamin C, and has been used to regulate menses. Tea has been used as a nerve tonic, a diuretic, to treat diarrhoea, irregular menses, gonorrhoea, stomach and lung ailments. A poultice has been made from the powdered dry leaves to treat open sores. Fruits have been used to clean teeth. (Plants for a Future)
Green Roof: This drought hardy plant has been grown in soil levels 5 inches and up with good results. (Evergreen)
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The Network of Nature is a national initiative to strengthen Canadian biodiversity by providing the inspiration, tools and knowledge to enhance existing greenspaces and naturalize developed areas with locally appropriate native plant species.