Fruit diversity in a natural European habitat of Fragaria moschata Weston
Fragaria moschata also known as musk strawberry is one of the four indigenous species of Fragaria in Europe. These wild species harbour interesting characteristics and are therefore a valuable source for breeding in general. To evaluate the potential of wild populations of musk strawberries we have collected 110 strawberry plants at a natural site in Saxony, Germany, characterized by woodland, semi-dry grassland and meadow orchards. Flow cytometry and genotyping by microsatellite markers were used to identify the species background of each plant, thereby plants of other species (F. vesca and F. viridis) and some interspecific hybrids were detected. Plant characteristics were scored for each individual (leaf and flower morphology, stolon type, and trichome formation). Since F. moschata is a dioecious species the sex of individual plants was determined morphologically. Flowering female and hermaphroditic plants were pollinated by hand on a daily basis to ensure good fruit set. Fruits were harvested, weighted, photographed, and morphologic characteristics were classified in dependence of the UPOV criteria. Additionally, the soluble solid content (in °Brix) and the citric acid equivalent were determined. Our data revealed a remarkable high diversity in fruit morphology referring to size, colour, shape and a high variation of the sugar/acid-ratio between individual accessions.
Lesemann, S.S., Bölke, N., Tejeda Fernández, C.E., Buschmann, S., Gerischer, U., Neinhuis, C., Herklotz, V., Ritz, C.M. and Olbricht, K. (2017). Fruit diversity in a natural European habitat of Fragaria moschata Weston. Acta Hortic. 1156, 215-222
strawberry, wild species, diversity, fruit characteristics, natural population, hybridisation