Fragaria × ananassa ‘Rainier’

The breeding and selection of the ‘Rainier’ strawberry occurred in the 1960s, with commercial introduction in 1972. This cultivar was developed by Dr. Bruce Barritt (now retired) and C.D. Schwartz of Washington State University–hence the name. That it continues to be commercially grown is a testament to the quality of the fruit produced (it is quite tasty, though nothing surpasses wild strawberries) and cultivation demands of the plants. ‘Rainier’ is sufficiently disease-resistant for this particular farmer to use an integrated pest management approach. in IPM, synthetic pesticides are only used when necessary, and not necessarily used at all. Instead, other techniques such as preventative cultural practices (e.g., quick removal of diseased plants) or biological controls are used preferentially. This is a bit of a comfort, as strawberries as a crop are typically subject to pesticides.

Botanically speaking, strawberries aren’t true berries; a berry is a fleshy fruit produced from a single ovary, like a blueberry. Instead, strawberries are classified as an accessory fruit, where the edible part is not produced by the ovary at all. The fleshy part of the strawberry is actually the swollen receptacle. To make a comparison with raspberries (each an aggregate of drupelets), the receptacle of the raspberry plant is the pulpy, yellowish-white part left behind after the raspberry is picked.

Fragaria × ananassa 'Rainier'

8 responses to “Fragaria × ananassa ‘Rainier’”

  1. Calochilus

    Accessory fruits formed from a swollen pedicel are found on the Ballart Cherry (Exocarpos cupressifornis, Santalaceae) and the Plum Pine (Podocarpus elatus , Podocarpaceae) in Australia. I must say however, I’d rather eat strawberries, Exocarpos fruit are miniscule , subacid and have little more going for them than their colour. Plum Pine fruits are quite large, as big as a good olive and similarly coloured. there the resemblance ends, the texture is reminiscent of psyllium gel and the flavour is redolent of pine sap and little else. I guess if they were all that stood between you and starvation, you’d relish them 🙂

  2. phillip

    …for once..I open the page and exclaim..” I know what those are “ a four year old…I know apples also..

  3. Bonnie

    The only thing missing is the biscuit and whipped cream. 🙂

  4. iris lefleur

    They look delicious! Mine all have little critter nibbles in them 🙁 I am glad the critters have good food but wish they would share!

  5. Mary DeLand

    I love strawberries! I grew up in southern Missouri and picked them for school money. Mother made shortcake with overripes and pie crust. I salivate!!

  6. Eric Simpson

    Yes, wild strawberries are the best… but only when you find them on the trail. For all other purposes, I prefer a nice ginormous ‘Sequoia’ cultivar (less time spent hulling).

  7. elizabeth a airhart

    a bowl and the berries and heavy cream poured from a pitcher
    my grandad long used to raise berries in the state of indiana
    if you buy them out the basket do ask to look and be sure that
    the berries on the bottom are not becoming soft mushy
    the photo looks as if were in the current issue of food and wine
    thank you daniel

  8. Meighan

    Well how fitting is this, I just made Strawberry Jam today! Beautiful photo, and thanks for the info on this cultivar.

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