Cultivating Japan’s Rare White Strawberry. Upon seeing the title, I knew I had to watch it. I really love strawberries and seeing a white strawberry made me want to learn more about this variety. Japan is known for having many unique types of fruits: santonishiki cherries, dekopon (a type of orange) ume, and even square watermelons. While these fruits are unique, the one fruit that gets everyone talking is the infamous white strawberry. However, one question still remains: what exactly is a white strawberry?
White strawberries are strawberries with a white color, red seeds, and pink patches. One of the most popular types of white strawberries is the White Jewel Strawberry, the first to come out on the market. The difference between white strawberries and regular strawberries, besides their color, is that white strawberries are bred to be bigger, softer, and sweeter than their conventional counterparts. These strawberries, however, are not to be confused with pineberries, another type of strawberry that is white in color. About 50 different varieties of white strawberries are grown, each with a unique flavor.
White Jewel Strawberries were introduced nearly four years ago by Yasuhito Teshima in Japan’s Saga Prefecture. This prefecture is the only place known to grow this variety of strawberry. Teshima has been crossbreeding strawberries for numerous years to create a large strawberry that has white flesh and white skin. Although other white strawberries exist, Teshima claims that his are bigger and whiter than any other variety out there.
Teshima claims that though this particular type has some competition from the other varieties of white strawberries grown in Japan, it’s really not much of a contest. The White Jewel is significantly larger and whiter than any other breed, he says. And his farm in the Saga Prefecture in Japan is apparently the only place in the world that produces the one-of-kind luxury strawberry.
Features of White Strawberry
This white strawberry is like no other – white on the inside and outside, with deeply embedded red seeds, and often a light milky pink hue on the skin. Not to be confused with pineberries, a hybrid strawberry cultivated in the US and Europe, the white strawberry is large, juicy and sweeter than the usual supermarket strawberry. The special colour is achieved by a careful cultivation method that reduces its exposure to light, hence inhibiting the development of the typical red of strawberries. Apart from the fact that not many strawberry farmers are dedicated to the art of growing these particular strawberries, what adds to the scarcity is that only a small percentage of the strawberries from the same patch actually turn out a pure white – about 10% of production, according to the farmers.
I fell in love with ’White Soul’ the moment we met! It has so many fantastic qualities! It will lavish you with lovely white flowers and gorgeous white fruit all season long. These plants have traditional strawberry-shaped evergreen leaves but are runnerless unlike some varieties of strawberries. This makes them a wonderful choice for borders or any organized flower bed. Pairing or alternating white & traditional red strawberry plants together really makes a stunning color combination. Of course you can always plant them in a more casual fashion in a woodland setting where all of the beautiful white can really brighten things up. The White Soul Strawberry plant is a very heavy producer, and the fruits are actually larger than those of a red strawberry. On top of that, white strawberries are sweeter than red strawberries, and they also have a bit of a pineapple flavor to them. You can enjoy the berries fresh or in any way you would any other strawberry. They can give a very unique & beautiful new look to some old favorite deserts! Most people have never seen a white strawberry before, so whether they are spotted in your yard or as part of a tasty treat, they are sure to spark intrigue!
Benefits of White Strawberry
- Relatively new to the fruit scene
- Pineberry strawberries taste like pineapple
- Grow in beds, pots, or hanging baskets
- White berries which are speckled with red seeds and are aromatic
- NOT genetically modified
- The idea of having a steady supply of berries by growing your own from a bed of strawberry plants is tempting and, fortunately, as easy as pie
- Full Sun
- Mixed Colors
- Blooms: Throughout summer
- Bulb Size: # 1
- Grows 8-10″
- Hardy in USDA zones 5-8
- 48 contiguous US states, plus the District of Columbia
Prices of White Strawberry