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Irish name: Sú talún
Latin name: Fragaria x ananassa

Strawberries are one of the most loved summertime treats in Ireland. Once you’ve had the juicy, sweet flavour of fresh Irish strawberries, the summer has truly arrived.

For the strawberry plant to really have the fullest flavour, it should be planted in full sunshine and have lots of air circulating around it. Lots of people who grow strawberries put a layer of polythene (light plastic) around the plants to stop weeds from growing. If there are too many weeds around the plant, it won’t be able to get enough water or nutrients from the soil.

Strawberries growing in a greenhouse
Irish Farmers' Journal

Do you know how the strawberry plant grows? Long stalks, called runners, grow out from the main plant and put down roots along the ground. In this way, the plant gets bigger. Strawberry plants are usually planted in the autumn for the following year. Some people also grow them in baskets, just like in the photo above.

Like us, birds love to feed on the sweet, juicy strawberries, especially the blackbirds and thrushes. By eating the berries, the birds help to disperse the seeds around the countryside.

Have you ever made strawberry meringues? If you crunch up a meringue in a glass, add chopped strawberries and some cream, you’ll have the perfect summer dessert!

Would you have guessed that a cup of strawberries actually has more vitamin C than an orange? They are also very rich in potassium and folic acid. Overall, a very healthy berry!

Did you know?

The strawberry is not strictly a fruit!

A strawberry is an enlarged stem-end that is made up of lots of tiny fruits called achenes. The tiny, green, dried achenes of the strawberry are what most people think of as the strawberry seeds. They are dotted all over the strawberry, and the seeds of the plant are actually inside these achenes.

Look at the picture on the right. How many achenes can you count?