Forage Friday is only intended to be a conversation starter and all of the information presented is only intended to be as trivia. It should be mistaken for an endorsement of treatment. Please remember to do further research and be positive about identifying any wild edible before consuming.
There’s probably no other wild edible that causes more controversy than the ones that are referred to collectively as “Wild Strawberry”. I have seen people look on in absolute horror as I popped one in my mouth and swallowed. I can’t help but admit that in my twisted sense of humor I’ve pretended to choke for some. I’ve been told that the berry is deadly poison. One of the common names for mock strawberry is “snake berry” and the old wives’ tale is that snakes eat the mock strawberry in order to get their venom. The truth is that the most dangerous thing about the mock strawberry is the flavor… well, the lack thereof anyway. There’s a little variance depending on genetics and soil qualities but mostly it’s dry and bland.
Image Titled “Mock Strawberry 61220b”
In spite of the lack of flavor mock strawberries like real strawberry are rich in Vitamin C. And, here’s where that lack of flavor might actually be an advantage. It gives us a way to add nutritional value to other foods without changing the flavor. In addition to vitamin C the mock strawberry is reported to be rich in magnesium, potassium, zinc and has trace amounts of selenium. ( depending on soil conditions)
The leaves are used topically in a poultice to treat weeping eczema, insect bites and stings, boils and even though I highly doubt the effectiveness , snake bites are listed among the things that mock strawberry leaves are good for.
Image Titled “Mock Strawberry Flower 61220”
Mock Strawberry superficially resembles Garden strawberry but they’re actually not even the same genus. Real strawberries being genus Fragaria and mock strawberry listed as either Potentillia or Duchesbea.
One thing to note is that true strawberries have a white bloom while mock strawberry gas a yellow bloom.
Image Titled Strawberry Bush 92910. This plant is definitely toxic.
We started with the common belief that mock strawberry is toxic look alike of real strawberry so I decided to include an old photo of Strawberry Bush which is small shrub that is sometimes confused with strawberries. I’ll cover this plant more in depth at a later time but for now it’s a toxic strawberry look alike.
That’s about all I’ve got for tonight. Thank you joining me!
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