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Author Topic: New strawberry and blackberry cultivar developed.  (Read 4308 times)

murahilin

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bsbullie

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Re: New strawberry and blackberry cultivar developed.
« Reply #1 on: April 23, 2015, 03:14:39 PM »
More crappy berries.  Its the older varieties that are tried and true that are far better in taste quality.  Why do we have to keep breeding berries (and tomatoes) that are bred to "look pretty" on the outside and be able to sit on a store shelf for extended periods of time.  They are breeding these for commercialism and marketing.  For people who really care, the true consumer, its all about the taste.
- Rob

gunnar429

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Re: New strawberry and blackberry cultivar developed.
« Reply #2 on: April 23, 2015, 04:20:46 PM »
I love strawberries, and have always just gotten grocery store fruit (since I was a kid).  The past few years, especially, the fruit have been crazy bland.  They are huge, blemish-free, and almost purple-red--should be tasty, but the actual flavor is like wax jambu :o :'(

I even encountered this at the Florida Strawberry Festival--not a tasty heirloom to be found.  I have heard that sweet charlie, festival, and camarosa are good for south FL, but haven't tried them.  What are the tasty varieties that fruit here?

Also, do any alpine strawberries do well here in our climate?
~Jeff

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Viking Guy

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Re: New strawberry and blackberry cultivar developed.
« Reply #3 on: April 23, 2015, 07:19:42 PM »
If it wasn't for growing my own, I'm not sure I'd even remember what a real strawberry tastes like anymore.

The crap at the store is big, beautiful, abundant, and flavorless.

I miss the smaller "strawberry" sweet kinds we got years ago.

They've since bred the flavor right out of them.
-Adam

bsbullie

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Re: New strawberry and blackberry cultivar developed.
« Reply #4 on: April 23, 2015, 08:05:44 PM »
Sweet Charlie  and Florida 90 are two very good varieties i remember growing many years ago.
- Rob

Doglips

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Re: New strawberry and blackberry cultivar developed.
« Reply #5 on: April 24, 2015, 07:03:03 AM »
Also, do any alpine strawberries do well here in our climate?
I'm in Houston and I'm hearing no they won't do well.  But far be it me, to take the word of an expert.  So I'm trying anyways mine are just getting to fruiting size, so I don't know if I will see any this season (or ever).  The word is (never tried them), there are no other strawberries that even come close to these.  The berries are supposed to have an incredibly short life span of perfection. They go from cotton to rotten real fast so it is supposed to be all about the pick timing.  They don't store well off of the plant either.  If you get them at perfection, it is strawberry heaven, or so I've heard.  A good point is that the plant doesn't "wear out" like big berries, season after season of production.

fyliu

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Re: New strawberry and blackberry cultivar developed.
« Reply #6 on: April 24, 2015, 05:21:32 PM »
my yellow and white alpines died over the course of last year. They're supposedly grown from seeds rather than runners. I still have some dried fruits but I don't think they like my location. Not enough sun, and 2 hours of the most intense direct sun each day.

Doglips

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Re: New strawberry and blackberry cultivar developed.
« Reply #7 on: April 24, 2015, 09:06:02 PM »
My reading says either way, but I think some varieties don't run, so maybe that is what you have.

fyliu

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Re: New strawberry and blackberry cultivar developed.
« Reply #8 on: April 24, 2015, 09:17:11 PM »
I'm not really sure. It's what the lady who sold it to me said. At my location even plants I grow from a runner doesn't grow strong enough to send them out anymore.

Droshi

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Re: New strawberry and blackberry cultivar developed.
« Reply #9 on: May 02, 2015, 01:16:41 PM »
Wild strawberries in Minnesota where I grew up have tons of flavor, but tiny (smaller than my pinky nail) and few fruits. But when you find one, they pack an explosion of taste!

I agree with taste as a primary goal for me personally, but in nature it does seem to be at a balance between flavor, size, productivity and shelf life. You can have some, but not something with everything.

Trying to grow strawberries in Texas, my experience has been disappointing for everything. Next year I'll be trying out Chandler as I've heard they are good. If it doesn't work out, I'll officially give up on getting a useful crop around here. I'm sure some people can do it, but strawberries really seem to take dedication, and for me it's only worth that dedication in a tree or bush that stays around. When it's a plant that eventually dies off (strawberry, tomato, etc), it feels harder to invest so much into it...

LivingParadise

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Re: New strawberry and blackberry cultivar developed.
« Reply #10 on: May 06, 2015, 01:07:06 PM »
I ordered Evie Everbearing Strawberry bare roots online, and they have survived fine and fruited in the shade here. They are on the smaller side, but mine have very good taste. And the smell is intoxicating! I grow them in boxes with organic soil though, to protect them from critters, and also because of the high PH soil here. I have not had them long enough to know if they will fruit prolifically here, but they have done fine for the past few months anyway, and send out plenty of runners.

Caesar

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Re: New strawberry and blackberry cultivar developed.
« Reply #11 on: May 14, 2015, 11:54:52 AM »
I love strawberries, and have always just gotten grocery store fruit (since I was a kid).  The past few years, especially, the fruit have been crazy bland.  They are huge, blemish-free, and almost purple-red--should be tasty, but the actual flavor is like wax jambu :o :'(

I even encountered this at the Florida Strawberry Festival--not a tasty heirloom to be found.  I have heard that sweet charlie, festival, and camarosa are good for south FL, but haven't tried them.  What are the tasty varieties that fruit here?

Also, do any alpine strawberries do well here in our climate?

I'm growing Alpines here in PR, started 'em from seed myself. They're doing fine, and I don't live in the cooler mountains... I live in the hot lowlands (it can get pretty nasty when it's dry). I have them under pretty bad conditions (under-sized pots, root bound, etc.), and while they're not very productive under those conditions, the plants themselves seem healthy, and flower often. The ants and the birds usually beat me to the fruit, and I usually get the under-ripe ones. When I find the more properly-ripened ones, I give 'em to my parents, and they concur: they've never had a better strawberry. The ones I have in bigger pots and better soil definitely seem more productive, so I don't think climate is an issue, as even the pot-bound ones end up flowering and fruiting from time to time. If I had 'em under better conditions, I'm sure they'd be just as productive here as they are up north.

As a matter of fact, I gave loads of plants away, and my friends (who have them under better conditions) say they get at least two berries a day per plant. Still in pot culture, and bigger than mine, but under-sized for what this berry usually needs.

So give 'em a try. If they do this well in PR, I don't see how they can fail in Florida. I'm growing Reine des Vallees and Yellow Wonder, in full sun.

I'm also growing a June-bearing Strawberry (Cabot) in a raised bed, but I'm lucky if I get more than 3 berries in a season from it. Very unproductive here, for some reason (knowing me, I'm probably doing something wrong).

Doglips

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Re: New strawberry and blackberry cultivar developed.
« Reply #12 on: May 15, 2015, 11:10:51 PM »
My reading suggests that alpines should be grown in half barrels for best production.  Sounds like they can put out far reaching roots.

mrtexas

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Re: New strawberry and blackberry cultivar developed.
« Reply #13 on: May 25, 2015, 01:59:44 PM »
Also, do any alpine strawberries do well here in our climate?

I'm in Houston and I'm hearing no they won't do well.  But far be it me, to take the word of an expert.  So I'm trying anyways mine are just getting to fruiting size, so I don't know if I will see any this season (or ever).  The word is (never tried them), there are no other strawberries that even come close to these.  The berries are supposed to have an incredibly short life span of perfection. They go from cotton to rotten real fast so it is supposed to be all about the pick timing.  They don't store well off of the plant either.  If you get them at perfection, it is strawberry heaven, or so I've heard.  A good point is that the plant doesn't "wear out" like big berries, season after season of production.


There must be some that do well in Houston. They have commercial strawberry fields in Ponchatoula, LA just north of Lake Ponchartrain. I hear they are grown as annuals. http://www.lastrawberryfestival.com/

mrtexas

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Re: New strawberry and blackberry cultivar developed.
« Reply #14 on: May 25, 2015, 02:07:17 PM »
Here is my experience with strawberries. The ones in the store are good
for throwing at your kids. Hit them and they are good to throw again.
I went picking at a strawberry patch north of Beaumont,TX and asked
what variety they were growing. Yup, the same rock hard ones they grow
in California.

I actually know what real strawberries taste like! I grew up in the Seattle area
and they still grow real strawberries there at the several remaining you pick farms
in the exerbs. They are juicy and what a taste! They don't however travel very good.
They are lucky to last 1-2 days after picking and put in baskets. 

A friend at work once went on a trip to the Pacific NW and was quite impressed with
the local strawberry shortcake. Yes, I said, those grocery store berries should be convicted
of impersonating a real strawberry.

A couple years ago I was in Indianapolis and strawberries happened to be in season. I went
to a you pick farm and they were way good! They also smelled like flowers.

Haven't tried to grow strawberries myself here in Fort Bend County, TX.

Caesar

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Re: New strawberry and blackberry cultivar developed.
« Reply #15 on: May 25, 2015, 03:54:33 PM »
Unless you pick a really crappy variety (I've seen a couple around), homegrown strawberries will always taste better than store-bought ones. Since they don't have to travel a thousand miles, there's no need to pick 'em early, and the flavor develops more fully. That said, there's still noticeable differences between varieties, and what you grow depends on a combination of which ones can handle your locality and which ones you like best.

In hotter climates, like mine, day-neutrals are most often recommended (Seascape, Eversweet, Tristar), but I'm growing a couple of June-bearers, and they're surviving just fine. Note that I said "surviving"... they're not really producing well, but I get a few berries twice a year.

The alpines, surprisingly, are the most productive ones I have. That's not saying much, but I reiterate: I have them under nasty conditions. That they're alive at all is, I think, near miraculous. As Doglips said: they're best suited to really large pots (half-barrels), and I have them pot-bound in tiny four-inch pots (I can't wait to see what they crank out when I get 'em into the raised bed!).

As to which ones are the best, that depends on your preferences. I've heard Alpines and Mara des Bois (day-neutral) being referred to as the best of 'em all (my family concurs, at least on the Alpines; haven't tried Mara yet), but I've also heard of some people saying they taste too much like candy for their taste (they probably prefer more balance with the acidity). I also have a possibly nameless june-bearer referred to as "King Kong" by the catalog my Gramma got it from, and while it's far from huge or perfect, it actually has pretty good aroma and flavor when fully ripened. This is a variety I expected to be sub-par, so it goes to show you that you'll usually get good berries at home no matter which you choose.

So if you're looking for your ideal strawberry, read up on the different varieties. Things like heat and moisture sensitivity, productivity, texture and flavor profile. Some are firm, others soft and juicy, some are sweeter, others, more acidic. Day-neutrals produce less at any given moment, but have an indefinite fruiting season, and do well where it's warm. June-bearers do well where it's cool, and have a short fruiting season with a bigger harvest. Alpines are usually ever-bearing, produce more with each passing year (at least until they get old, maybe around the 5 year mark; then you rejuvenate by dividing), and have heat-tolerant cultivars. Musks are june-bearing, and I have yet to get a single flower (not surprising, since they need more than Alpines and I have 'em under the same conditions).

There's a lot to choose from, but it's not hard if you know what you got and you know what you want.

mrtexas

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Re: New strawberry and blackberry cultivar developed.
« Reply #16 on: May 25, 2015, 05:19:40 PM »
The strawberries I picked near Beaumont were ripe but were the
same inferior tasting variety as in grocery stores. Nothing compares to the
old soft heirloom varieties.

Caesar

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Re: New strawberry and blackberry cultivar developed.
« Reply #17 on: May 25, 2015, 05:38:03 PM »
But they still tasted slightly better than when store-bought, right? Wasn't really trying to say that every homegrown strawberry is spectacular (clearly not), just that they taste better than store-bought. Like I said in my post, there are still noticeable differences between cultivars, and a high quality one will beat the lesser ones any day.

And yeah, soft is KING! Firm may be good for transportation or freezing, but soft takes the cake for off-the-vine goodness. And most of the old heirlooms were probably developed with flavor in mind, so they're usually better.

Doglips

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Re: New strawberry and blackberry cultivar developed.
« Reply #18 on: May 26, 2015, 11:39:05 AM »
The Camarosa I got from the local fruit trees sales didn't yield much this year and what they did were nothing spectacular, better than store bought, but not great.  Hoping for better.
Everyone raves on Mara de Bois, but local growers say they don't do well here, haven't tried myself.  I have some flowers on the Alpines so I'm crossing fingers for special.
I frequently buy store bought, I like them in salads (hey, marginal store bought is better than none!), as of just recent, the quality is way up, still not great but better than the norm.
Our rains have been horrid, sunlight is down, and strawberries really don't like the wet, so who knows what I will get, if anything.

buddyguygreen

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Re: New strawberry and blackberry cultivar developed.
« Reply #19 on: September 06, 2015, 08:04:04 PM »
Sweet Charlie  and Florida 90 are two very good varieties i remember growing many years ago.
Just bought a sweet charlie from your recommendation, also got a jewel and 3 types of alpine red, yellow and white.

Burpee is having a good sale and free shipping for anyone thats been looking to get some strawberries.

cfinley

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Re: New strawberry and blackberry cultivar developed.
« Reply #20 on: September 14, 2015, 05:14:26 AM »
I have several white/yellow alpine strawberry plants growing in coir hanging baskets and 6" tall plastic pots and they do quite well. I've never seen roots coming out of the bottom drain holes or anything else tbat would suggest they need a container as deep as a half barrel, although I might try something deeper now just to see if tbeyre more productive.
« Last Edit: September 14, 2015, 05:16:18 AM by cfinley »

Tropheus76

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Re: New strawberry and blackberry cultivar developed.
« Reply #21 on: September 14, 2015, 08:44:43 AM »
I think its pretty well established, anything you get from the store is generally going to be mass produced and kinda blah for the most part. They use cultivars selected for maximum production not taste. Star Fruit is a great example of this. If you want good tasting stuff you need to put in the work and do it yourself or find a farmers market with growers that aren't out for maximum dollar over quality.

That said, I am new to strawberries and going to try the hanging basket thing with a couple cultivars, alpine being one. In Central FL usually we can plant anytime of the year. Would that apply to strawberries or should I wait until Spring?

cfinley

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Re: New strawberry and blackberry cultivar developed.
« Reply #22 on: September 14, 2015, 02:31:56 PM »
I'd imagine any time of year is fine if you can find them. Sometimes I get a few flowers if theres a winter heatwave like we had last year. The baskets work great except for they dry out faster in the breeze, but with FL humidity that might not be so bad. I usually line the inside upper 2/3 of the coir with a ring of breathable black weed suppressant cloth, seems to help keep the moisture and soil in and they last a lot longer.

gunnar429

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Re: New strawberry and blackberry cultivar developed.
« Reply #23 on: October 22, 2015, 12:23:50 PM »
I have planted out Sweet Charlie and Camarosa strawberries for this coming winter/spring (Florida).  Never tried these FL-friendly varieties before, so hopefully since I got them planted in time, they will yield a bunch of tasty berries during the "off-season" for fruits.

Also considering festival and camino real.  Heard good things about Florida-80, but wasn't able to find any for sale.
~Jeff

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Doglips

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Re: New strawberry and blackberry cultivar developed.
« Reply #24 on: October 22, 2015, 02:49:40 PM »
I have several white/yellow alpine strawberry plants growing in coir hanging baskets and 6" tall plastic pots and they do quite well. I've never seen roots coming out of the bottom drain holes or anything else tbat would suggest they need a container as deep as a half barrel, although I might try something deeper now just to see if tbeyre more productive.
It was something that I read off of alpinestrawberries.us   The guy really seems to be into them.  I know his complaint was that some people use them for ground cover, cramming them close together and greatly reducing their yield.  It has been awhile since I read it, I think the half barrel statement was for the ideal spacing.  To each his own.  I killed mine off, I will try again next year, hot doesn't seem to be ideal for them.

 

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