Strawberry, strawberry

This monster strawberry, that looks like - and was the size of - 3 regular strawberries all fused together, showed up in a batch bought some days ago, and since then I haven't been able to look at any strawberries at the store without a twinge of fear.


I'm fairly sure that this strawberry just grew together by accident or something, but it sure looks like some horrible mutation. Still, it did make me think about something I haven't worried much about before - genetically engineered food.

Of course, real genetically engineered strawberries (if they exist) probably look very normal.

On the bright side, the very first alpine strawberries, or fraises des bois, are peeking out here and there in the wilderness that passes for a garden in front of the house. They are quite early this year, probably because of the hot days we have been having.


There are still too few to eat except to pick and pop straight into the mouth, but soon there will be enough to fill a small teacup, and eat with fresh (non-UHT, thank you) cream. The sight of these tiny wild strawberries, each with more flavor than 10 monster strawberries combined, is very comforting.

Filed under:  fruit spring offbeat

If you enjoyed this article, please consider becoming my patron via Patreon. ^_^

Become a Patron!


You think THAT's a monster strawberry? I once got to make the unpleasant discovery of a strawberry sprouting green leaves from most of its seeds. The strawberry was a big leafy monster! *shudders* Now I make sure to check for mutants in the strawberry baskets.

Our yard is full of tiny strawberries, anlong with violets and spring onions. Talk about wild!

All commercially available strawberry plants have been subject to a chemical process when in seed that doubles the number of chromosomes in the plant. This is what gives them that huuuuuuuge double fruited look in the supermarket. Occassionally you get a few too many chomosomes in your fruit and this is the result.

I love strawberries!! Prefer picking my own... but I have to confess that I eat more than ever goes in the basket ;)

My wife and I have taken to picking strawberries recently. We learned quickly that the smaller the berry, the better the flavor. We've picked 28 pounds in the last month!

picked a small handful of fraises des bois on sunday and the ones out front are ready to go. We have the golden variety as well as the standard green, but the green seem to produce better.

They are best, imho, eaten out of hand in the garden while walking around looking at your siberian irises, poppies, columbines, peonies and welsh poppies.

But then again, I don't have much patience for running in and putting them in a proper teacup. :)


Just yesterday I wrote about strawberries on my new blog, so I was tickled to discover your strawberry post on my first visit to I Was Really Just Very Hungry. Fortunately there are none of those creepy, modified giants in my garden. Just small, deliciously sweet heirlooms--and the strawberry-loving wild turtles who often beat me to them!
P.S. Three cheers to William and his wife for picking 28 pounds of strawberries. That's a LOT of work. Unless of course you were picking the giant mutant ones. . . :) So what do you plan to do with them? Or have you already eaten them all?

I live in Southern California, next Oxnard, home of the mutant berry. First the fields are covered - yes, covered - in sheets of plastic. Then they are treated with methyl bromide (it was banned but they keep putting off the date of the ban, so I am not sure if they are still using it or not) an ozone-depleting chemical par excellence.

Then we get the strawberries. They look much like your mutant. They are often so large that only 4 or 5 fit in a basket.

If you cut them open, they are white and hollow inside. If you put them in the fridge, they last weeks without rotting.

When I buy organic berries, they rot in a day or two. I think that is a good sign. God designed fragile food to rot, not to persist forever.

Ah, fraises des bois...I used to have them growing in the garden and if I was lucky I got a few before the bunnies and deer did. Yum

I loved your photo of the wild strawberry plants. We used to have them in our garden but they seem to have gone. Hmmmn..., I think I'll go and rummage. Inspiration! Thank you!

You often find fruits and vegetables which are two pieces that stuck together during development. In India, there is an old wives tale that eating these causes women to give birth to twins! I remember I would seek them out and eat them 'coz I thought it would be fun to have twins!

Strawberries have been coming in for about 2 weeks here in Upstate NY, and the season goes quick. Got to get 'em while the gettin's good!



Recently my girlfriend & I bought some strawberries and in the batch was a mutant strawberry, just like the one above. I didn't want to eat it, but unfortunately my gf did when I wasn't there. I'm expecting her to die in a few days as a result.

gulp...I hope your girlfriend doesn't die... :)

well... though genetic engineering is a hot issue these days, and for good reason; most plants humans have 'domesticated' are, in fact genetically engineered. thousands of years ago many wild species were somehow selected for the doubling of chomosomes that creates larger, more productive crops. plants have an odd ability to be viable after such a rather scary sounding process (to animals, anyhow) has been done, but i would argue that in some cases its not at all a bad thing (i.e. vitamin corn for the masses and masses of malnutritioned). of course, though defending our modification of plant genetics (potatoes, tomatoes, corn, wheat.. to name a few that have been altered, albeit by ancients without our present 'skill') to some extent, i am strongly in agreement with the prospects some tampering may have horrible consequences. at the least, some pesticides, natural and harmless (many used in organic techniques) will be rendered useless because insects become immune when exposed to them over long periods of time when their 'engineered' to be exuded by the plant. and... at worst, things like poisons being produced by plants, tainted by the modified ones and destroying the 'natural' stuff.
eh, anyhow, just a topic im into.... nice strawberry pic! :)
(id be more worried about the chemicals sprayed on, which is sooo much more prevalent anyhow... but.. enough negativity for one day)

Man, i was looking on information aabout mutant strawberries for biology so thanks :-> My brother loves to eat mutant strawberries because there so big ......Hey i tried to warn him

Woah... The only good thing about those HUGE OVER SIZED MUTANT strawberries is that there's a lot to eat from it.

I got a batch from walmart and theres nothing but mutants in it lol. I guess thats what I get for going to walmart.

was searching the internet for the strawberry sprouting leaves phenomenon, I live by vineyards, but my strawberries have been here for years and aside from getting a little OSH/Scott steer manure near them last summer, have no contact with the "Monsanto Monster." So, if there isn't pesticide or hormone runoff from Napa Valley grape growers, this mutation is just a whirl of the gene pool. It's Mother's Day May, and uh, no Agribusiness shenanigans have been here on my watch. Maybe strawberries just are prone to plot twists.