Marin Master Gardeners
University of California
Marin Master Gardeners

Plant Guide

 Latin Name Fragaria chiloensis
 Common Name Ornamental Strawberry
 CA Native California Native
 Plant Type Ground Cover
 Size 6" - 12" x 1'
 Flower Color White
 Bloom Time Spring
 Leaves Dark, Glossy Green
 Evergreen Evergreen
 Deer Resistant Rarely Damaged
 Wildlife Value Bees, Seed and Fruit for Birds
 Growth Rate Moderate
 Hardiness Hardy
 Adverse Growth Factors None
 Special Features Attractive Berries, Low Maintenance
 Water Use Low, Moderate
 Soil pH 6.5-7.5 (neutral)
 Exposure Full Sun, Partial Shade, Shade
 Soil Type Not Particular
 Drainage Good Drainage
 Description and Cultural Plant Tips This is an evergreen, low growing, wild strawberry which forms 6" - 12" high lush mats and has edible red fruit. It is a native of the coastal bluffs and sand dunes of California. It is a good choice for a low maintenance lawn replacement or naturalized woodland setting. It can withstand light food traffic.

Strawberries can adapt to a wide range of soils but they do best with good drainage. Plant rooted stolons 12" - 18"  apart in late spring in full sun in coastal Marin  and part shade in hotter parts of Marin. Flat-grown plants can be put in at any time. Plant no deeper then the plants were growing in flat. Add an amendment or organic fertilizer to the soil after planting. Mulch well without covering plant to retain moisture. Late winter mowing will encourage vigorous growth in the spring. Apply iron if leaves start to turn yellow. Water weekly the first summer, once established does not need summer water.

Bees are attracted to the flower nectar and birds like the berries.

Can be attacked by the strawberry crinkle virus which is carried by the strawberry aphid. See the UC IPM for treatment options.


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