U.S. Department of Agriculture: Agricultural Research Service, Lincoln, Nebraska


Date of this Version



C. Kole (ed.), Wild Crop Relatives: Genomic and Breeding Resources, Temperate Fruits; DOI 10.1007/978-3-642-16057-8_2,


Strawberry, genus Fragaria L., is a member of the family Rosaceae, subfamily Rosoideae (Potter et al. 2007), and has the genus Potentilla as a close relative. Strawberry fruits are sufficiently economically important throughout the world such that the species is included in The International Treaty on Plant Genetic Resources, Annex 1 (http://www.planttreaty.org/).

The hybrid strawberry fruit of commerce, Fragaria x ananassa Duchesne ex Rozier nothosubsp. ananassa, is eaten by millions of people and is cultivated from the arctic to the tropics. More than 75 countries produce significant amounts of this fruit (FAO 2010). Annual world production is increasing from 3 to more than 4 thousand MT (Fig. 2.1). About 98% of the production occurs in the Northern Hemisphere, though production is expanding in the south (Hummer and Hancock 2009).

The genus Fragaria was first summarized in pre- Linnaean literature by C. Bauhin (1623). In Hortus Cliffortianus, Linneaus (1738) described this genus as monotypic containing Fragaria flagellis reptan; in Species Plantarum (Linneaus 1753), he described three species including varieties, though several European species now known were omitted, and one belonging to Potentilla was included (Staudt 1962).