Strawberry Fun Facts
Some of the earliest accounts of strawberries came from ancient Rome circa 200 BC. The first sketch of a strawberry plant was printed in 1484.
Early publications spoke of medicinal uses for strawberries, not as edible fruit. In the 12th Century Saint Hildegard von Binger pronounced strawberries unfit to eat because they may have been contaminated by snakes and toads due to the fact that they were grown so close to the ground.
In the mid-18th century, Charles Linnaeus, a Swedish botanist, put this superstition to rest by switching to a diet consisting only of strawberries to prove them edible.
- The strawberry belongs to the genus Fragraria in the rose family, along with apples and plums. The name of the scientific classification was derived from the Old Latin word for fragrant. The modern Italian word for strawberry is still “Fragola”.
- February 27th is National Strawberry Day.
- May 21st is National Strawberries and Cream Day.
- June 14th is National Strawberry Shortcake Day.
- September 28th is National Strawberry cream Pie Day.
- The strawberry is not classified by botanists as a true berry. True berries, such as blueberries and cranberries have seeds inside. The strawberry, however has its dry, yellow “seeds” on the outside (each of which is actually considered a separate fruit).
- Native American Indians called strawberries “heart-seed berries” and pounded them into their traditional corn-meal bread.
- In fourteenth-century France, Charles V ordered twelve hundred strawberry plants to be grown in the Royal Gardens of the Louvre.
- On the average, there are 200 tiny seeds in every strawberry.
- If all the strawberries produced in California this year were laid berry to berry, they’d wrap around the world 15 times. That’s enough strawberries to provide every U.S. household with 12 pint baskets.
- Strawberry juice combined with honey will reduce inflammation or sunburn. Rub the mixture thoroughly into the skin before rinsing off with warm water and lemon juice.
- The largest producing state, California harvests 83% of the strawberries grown in the U.S. on approximately 24,500 acres. And with about 5,000 commercial acres, Florida is the second largest producing state. Ideal temperature for strawberry plants should not exceed higher than 78 degrees or lower than 55 degrees.
- Every strawberry plant is hand-picked approximately every three days. This is the time in which it takes for strawberries to complete their cycle of turning from green to white to red. There is no storage of fresh strawberries. After picking, they are rushed to coolers where huge fans extract the field heat. Then they are delivered to supermarkets across the country via refrigerated trucks.
Strawberry Cream Pie
Recipe and image courtesy of
- 1 pastry shell (9 inches), baked
- 1/2 cup slivered almonds, optional
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 3 tablespoons cornstarch
- 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 2 cups milk
- 1 egg, lightly beaten
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/2 teaspoon almond extract, optional
- 1/2 cup heavy whipping cream
- 1/2 cup crushed strawberries
- 1/2 cup water
- 1/4 cup sugar
- 2 teaspoons cornstarch
- 3 cups fresh strawberries, halved
- Whipped cream, optional
- Cover bottom of pie shell with nuts if desired; set aside. In a large saucepan, combine the sugar, cornstarch, flour and salt; gradually stir in milk. Cook and stir over medium-high heat until thickened and bubbly. Reduce heat; cook and stir 2 minutes more. Remove from the heat and stir a small amount into egg; return all to the saucepan. Cook and stir until almost bubbly. Reduce heat; cook and stir 1-2 minutes more (do not boil). Remove from the heat; stir in vanilla and almond extract if desired. Cool to room temperature. Whip cream; fold into filling. Pour into pie shell. Chill for at least 2 hours.
- About 2 hours before serving, prepare glaze. Combine crushed strawberries and water in a large saucepan; cook for 2 minutes. Combine sugar and cornstarch; gradually stir into the berries. Cook until thick and clear, stirring constantly. Strain. Cool for 20 minutes.
- Meanwhile, arrange berry halves over filling; pour glaze evenly over berries. Refrigerate for at least 1 hour. Garnish with whipped cream if desired.
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