Virtues: Barren strawberry (Waldsteinia ternata) is a perennial flowering groundcover. It is an easy-to-grow plant with nice foliage and yellow flowers that appear in spring. As the common name barren strawberry suggests, the plant looks like a strawberry plant, but it does not offer edible fruit.
Common name: Barren strawberry, dry strawberry, yellow strawberry
Botanical name: Waldsteinia ternata
Barren strawberry flowers: Small, 5-petaled yellow flowers appear in mid- to late spring. Strawberry-like fruits follow, but these are inedible.
Barren strawberry foliage: Leaves have three segments. They are glossy green in spring and summer and turn bronze in the fall.
Growth habit: This perennial groundcover grows 4 to 6 inches tall and slowly spreads to an indeterminate width. Given time it can cover a large area with a thick mat of foliage and spring flowers. Barren strawberry is an herbaceous perennial; in other words it dies down over the winter and resumes growth in spring. In the warmest areas of its growing range it may be an evergreen groundcover.
Best season: Barren strawberry flowers in spring, but its leaves look nice from spring through fall.
Origin: Waldsteinia ternata is native to Europe and northern Asia.
How to grow barren strawberry: Waldsteinia ternata is an easy-to-grow perennial that tolerates a wide range of soils. Barren strawberry will grow in full sun or part shade. Once established, this is a drought-tolerant groundcover. USDA Zones 4–9.
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