Wild Strawberry

Fragaria vesca

preview hoep 00012 fragaria vesca walderdbeereFruits will usually gain childrens attention a lot easier than vegetables or herbs do, even though the season for fresh strawberries, raspberries or cherries is only a few weeks. Strawberries are often on top of their list of favourite fruits. In late spring the maturation of wild strawberries starts - still one of the most popular wild fruit species.
In earlier centuries, the widespread use of strawberries was as medicinal plant. This fact has been almost forgotten. The key ingredient of the leaves (and roots) is a tanning agent, which is why the tea prepared from it can be used especially for gargling and rinsing of inflamatory mucous membranes. This tea also helps against stomach and intestinal disorders, especially diarrhea. If the medical effect is not desired and strawberry leaves are rather used as ordinary „house tea“, it is advisable to collect very young leaves only and perhaps dry them, as they contain relatively little tannin.

Other than tannins, the leaves also contain other ingredients such as salicylic acid, phytochemicals (flavonoids and leucanthocyans) and small amounts of volatile oil. The ripe fruits, especially those of the wild strawberries are rich in vitamin C, fruit acids and minerals such as potassium, magnesium, calcium, iron, zinc, manganese, copper, cobalt and phosphorus.