The Archer Strawberry Variety

archer strawberry varietyIt has taken fifteen years for the Archer strawberry variety to come to fruition.  There is quite a bit of effort and a ton of patience involved in bringing a new strawberry variety to market.  And, the new Archer strawberry variety is no exception.  The New York State Agricultural Experiment Station in Geneva, New York (Cornell University), has finally released the variety that was selected in 2001.  Courtney Weber, associate professor in the School of Integrative Plant Science, is the man responsible for this new and exceptional variety.  If early indicators are correct, this berry could significantly boost both farming revenues and culinary enjoyment.

What Makes the Archer Strawberry Variety Special?

Strawberry plants can be fickle.  They often succumb to fungal pathogens, and pests seem to enjoy munching on them just as much as humans do.  So, whenever the process of strawberry selection begins for a new variety, one of the main goals is to ensure that the plants can survive in the locations for which it is developed.  Archer does just that.  It is hardy and resistant to most of the common strawberry pathogens that can inflict losses on gardeners and commercial growers alike.

Hardiness isn't the most notable characteristic of the Archer strawberry variety, however.  Size matters.  Archer is a gigantic strawberry variety.  The berries are very large, topping out at a staggering 50 grams (a little bit less than 2 ounces).  That is quite large for a strawberry.  Big berries have been bred before, though.  The new Archer strawberry variety succeeds in another category where other large-fruited varieties have notably failed: taste.

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Delizz Strawberry Plants & Seeds

strawberry delizzDelizz strawberry plants are here!  Strawberry plants are constantly being developed and cross-bred in attempt to improve upon the already-great qualities inherent in the small fruits.  When the breeding programs scattered across the globe stumble upon (or painstakingly isolate!) genetic traits that result in superior strawberries, strawberry lovers everywhere benefit.  It just so happens that a new strawberry variety has been developed and released and will be headed to markets in the United States as early as this spring.

ABZ Seeds, a Dutch company from Andijk-Holland specializing in gourmet strawberries, has developed a new strawberry cultivar called Delizz Strawberry.  Delizz strawberries are being produced and sold through the Holland Strawberry House at present, but are headed this way amidst significant buzz, and should be available at some point this spring 2016 (be sure to check the seed and plant directories for availability).  They were available in Europe, Asia, and Australia last year (2015).

Characteristics of Delizz Strawberry Plants

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Fairfax Strawberry Plants

fairfax strawberry plantsMany people have fond memories of eating strawberries as children on the knees of their grandparents or sneaking a few berries as they filled their baskets from the local pick-your-own strawberry farm.  Back during the “good ol' days” the primary way people enjoyed strawberries was by picking them from their own gardens, picking them from a local farm, or buying them from a local farmer who either picked or had his help pick them for market.

Each month I have people write and ask how to find the “old” varieties of strawberries that their grandparents grew.  They testify that the new varieties just don't seem to match their memories of the strawberries they so enjoyed during those bygone days.  The explosive strawberry flavor they remember just can't be matched by the modern strawberries they buy off the shelf; and, they can't even get the same flavor by growing their own strawberries from the commercially available varieties available online or at local nurseries.

Well, I'm happy to be able to let everyone know that old-fashioned is back…

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Novelty Strawberries

novelty strawberriesNovelty Strawberries for the Home Garden

It is finally that time of year again! The winter freeze is in the process of giving way to the spring thaw, and that means it is time to start planning your garden. The sooner you start planning, the sooner you will be ready to plant, and the sooner you will be ready to harvest delicious earth-grown produce.  Novelty strawberries could be an option for the adventurous gardener this year.

Since strawberry plants often find their way into many gardeners' plots each year, I thought it might be beneficial to review some of the lesser-known options. If you have a square foot garden or a few extra rows (or even a partial row) of space to use, you may want to consider branching out into some of these novelty strawberry varieties.

Everyone knows the traditional red and juicy strawberry. Many don't know that there are other, less-common options available as well. This post will familiarize you with you options. If you are a bit adventurous and willing to branch out, try planting one or more of these novelty strawberries. You'll find them unique and well-suited as attraction-getters, whether you use them in salads, enter them in contests, or find other amazing uses for them!

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Recommended Strawberry Varieties for Canada

Recommended Strawberry Varieties for CanadaStrawberry plants are, in my humble opinion, a truly fascinating marvel of nature.  They are amazingly adaptable; they propagate themselves in a plurality of ways; and they produce a fleshy red, white, yellow, or purple fruit that is universally prized by the intelligent and instinctive creatures that live all around us (including us human folk!).  They have developed and adapted means of surviving sub-zero temperatures, and, consequently, can be grown from the warmer temperate regions of our great planet all the way north or south to the frigid regions.

But, their adaptability and genetic flexibility have allowed for selective breeding.  Researchers have been able to breed for desired characteristics.  And, while such breeding programs have allowed for improved disease resistance, bigger strawberries, different colors, and more commercially-viable cultivars, the breeding has also culled some of the hardiness from some of the varieties as specificity has narrowed by region.  Today, not just any strawberry variety will do well in just any ol' location.  The more extreme the weather, the more specific one should be when selecting a specialized variety for planting in order to obtain the best harvest from your efforts.

That, my strawberry-loving friends, is where this post can help!  If you live in the frigid environs of Canada (at least in winter), you need to know how to pick an appropriately hardy strain of strawberry plants so that you end up happy with your final yield of fruit.  If you are from the United States, go here for your state-by-state recommended varieties.  This page is a compilation of each of the recommend strawberry variety lists for each of the Canadian provinces and territories.

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Snow White Strawberry

strawberry snow white strawberry varietyNew Snow White Strawberry Variety

With the recent surge in popularity of white strawberries, it isn't surprising that more varieties of the pale delicacy will be coming to market.  While the exotic pineberry (see here for all the details: Pineberry Pineberries) is still the class leader, a new white strawberry variety is trying to work its way into the limelight.

The strawberry Snow White is now being sold in the UK.  Just as Pineberries began their foray into the market within the bounds of Europe, so also do the suppliers of ‘Snow White' hope to launch a new wave of these albino-like cousins of the traditional red strawberry.  While not technically an albino strawberry, the lack of bioflavonoids do result in ripe fruits lacking the familiar red hue.

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Vote for Pineberries

vote for pineberriesFor green thumbs and garden aficionados, Christmas is nice, but it isn't the most wonderful time of the year.  That honor is reserved for the week after the holiday through the first of January.  Why?  Because that is garden planning season!  The anticipation of the holidays yields to the post-holiday bleakness for some, but the anticipation of warmer weather, green shoots, and delicious harvests causes many more to rush to their mailboxes each day to thumb through the full-color catalogs of seed and plant offerings by the nurseries around the country.

Each year, new offerings and better plants become available.  Along with the standard improvements in size, shape, and yield, new varieties are developed and released, and new exotics become popular.  This year, I suggest you consider “voting” for something different: pineberries.  Pineberries burst onto the scene a few years ago in the UK, and their popularity trajectory has increased constantly since then.

Pineberries are a great addition to any garden.  What are they, you ask?  Where can you get your own, you ask?  Well, this site exists for answers!

Go here for pineberry information and history, where you can buy pineberries, and linked information about pineberry seeds: PINEBERRY & PINEBERRIES

Vote for Pineberries 2013 by planting some yourself!  Then, spread the word by sharing with your friends using the share buttons at the top of the page!

 

Flavorfest Strawberry Variety

flavorfest strawberry varietyFor those strawberry enthusiasts who have an interest in the latest and greatest developments in the world of horticulture, I am pleased to spread the word about the latest strawberry cultivar released by the breeding program at the United States Department of Agriculture's Agriculture Research Service at Beltsville, Maryland.  ‘Flavorfest' is the latest improved variety selected and subsequently released by the program at the end of 2012.  It takes quite a bit of work and research and testing for a new variety to be developed, and Flavorfest shows considerable potential.

Flavorfest is well-suited for growing in the mid-Atlantic and northeastern regions of the United States, as well as bordering regions.  It should perform well for growers using annual plasticulture methods or the more traditional matted row system, and trials have produced excellent results at various locations ranging from North Carolina into Canada.

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Purple Strawberries

purple strawberriesIntroducing the Purple Strawberry

Strawberries are big business.  Really big business.  In fact, the strawberry industry is a multi-billion dollar worldwide business.  And, the market keeps getting bigger and better – just like the strawberries themselves.  Since there is so much money to be made selling one of the world's most delightful and relatively easy to grow fruits, new varieties are constantly being developed, refined, and even engineered by manipulating the genetics of the strawberry plant itself.  While I am not keen on the artificial manipulation of the core genetic structure of any food, much less something already as delightful as strawberries, it is hard to argue that something new seems to always be making headlines regarding strawberries.  Now, the latest in the strawberry color scheme is available for your home garden: purple strawberries!

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Pineberries! Try Pineberry Plants in 2012

pineberry plants 2012In the United States, just about every home gardener cuts his or her teeth with tomatoes and peppers when entering into the world of gardening for the first time.  And, for years afterward, those plants yield bountifully and are a productive stable.  For those gardeners who are ready to branch out, I have a suggestion.  Why not try planting pineberries this year?

Pineberry plants are not new, but they are new to most gardeners.  They have increased in popularity over the last several years since they were first sold in the UK commercially on a limited basis.  Now, these pineberry plants are readily available (click the links below).  What makes them special isn't their huge fruits or their enormous harvests, but the unique flavor and aroma.  They have natural pineapple accents!

So, if you have a spare square foot in your garden this year, you may want to consider planting pineberries.  For all the details you need regarding pineberry plants, pineberry seeds, and all things pineberry, see this post: Pineberry Pineberries.  The suppliers of plants are linked from that page and can also be found here: Pineberry.  And, if you are into unique garden plants, don't miss all the other varieties of White Strawberries available to you!

The Best Strawberries for Making Strawberry Wine

best strawberries for making strawberry wineEvery now and then, an adventurous soul will ask me about making strawberry wine (you can learn about making strawberry wine on the Strawberry Wine Recipe page).  Invariably, one of the first questions asked is, “What are the best strawberries for making for making strawberry wine?”  After all, it all begins with the strawberries!

Best Strawberries for Wine: Background

Strawberries are uniquely suited for making “consume-me-now” wines.  Unlike wines made from grapes, aging doesn't improve the body of many strawberry wines.  Additionally, the relatively high sugar content of virtually all strawberries makes most strawberry varieties suitable for wine making.  Grapes, on the other hand, are highly variable.  Some grape varieties are noble, and some are, well, not.  By no means are all grapes equal when it comes to wines.  And, to be fair, all strawberries are not equal either; it is just that the variability is much less, making most strawberry varieties acceptable choices.

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Popular Strawberry Varieties

popular strawberry varietiesIf you are looking for guidance on which strawberry varieties will grow well where you live, you have come to the right place.  Strawberry Plants .org has numerous resources that will help you find whatever it is that you need, as long as it is related to strawberries or strawberry plants.  One of the most common problems a gardener encounters is finding an appropriate strawberry cultivar.

There are numerous strawberry varieties in existence.  Finding the right one for your conditions can be difficult.  The best place to start is likely to find which varieties are recommended for your state (see the recommended strawberry varieties page).  But, if you want to just go with the flow, the varieties listed below are the most popular varieties offered by nurseries selling strawberry plants directly to the public.

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