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"And God saw all that He had made, and behold, it was very good. And there was evening and there was morning, the sixth day" (Genesis 1:31)
Wild Flowers of Sleepy Hollow Lake
- Wild Strawberry (Fragaria virginiana) -
(click on the photos to enlarge)
In early spring we begin to see the distinctive palmate (meaning that the leaflets radiate out from a single point of attachment) leaf structure of the wild strawberry. Each of the three leaflets are oval-shaped and sharply toothed. Shortly after the leaves appear, the wild strawberry begins to bloom, and can continue to do so into July. The height of wild strawberries can range from 2 to 6 inches, and they are quite adept at staying below the "cut-line" in lawn areas while continuing to bloom and produce fruit.
This photo of the wild strawberry gives us another view of the palmate leaf structure, the new flower buds (left-center), and an open flower, which is being visited by an insect friend (it's there if you look closely).
Our insect friend is more visible in this ten to twelve times enlarged photo of the wild strawberry flower. The actual size of the strawberry flower is about 3/4 of an inch across. Note the five rounded white petals of the flower and the numerous stamens and pistils on a cone-shaped center.
This is a photo of newly opened wild strawberry flowers. Note that many of the petals have not fully expanded and that the stamens with their anther tips have not grown and matured. For comparison, see the previous photo. Strawberries are members of the Rose family.
In late spring the wild strawberry fruit begins to develop. Each of the wild strawberry pistils seem to be connected to a separate seed on the developing berry, much like strands of "silk" on an ear of sweet corn. When the berries mature they turn a bright red (see the next photo).
These tiny, mature wild strawberry berries have a wonderful flavor which many people consider better than the cultivated varieties. We usually get to sample only a few each year, as many of the animals consider them delicious, too; and God did give this fruit to them for their food, and they are the ones who are responsible for spreading the wild strawberry seeds. All parts of the wild strawberry plant (root, leaves and fruit) have been used for medicinal purposes.
| Wild Flowers of SHL | Art and Photos |
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