Simple sequence repeat (SSR) markers, developed from Fragaria xananassa Duchesne ex Rozier 'Earliglow', were used to assess diversity among all of the proposed taxa of Fragaria virginiana Mill, and Fragaria chiloensis (L.) Mill. to facilitate strawberry germplasm utilization and conservation and to help resolve taxonomic relationships. DNA was obtained from 111 individuals representing F. chiloensis subsp. pacifica Staudt, F. chiloensis subsp. lucida (E. Vilm. ex Gray) Staudt, F. virginiana subsp. virginiana Mill., F. virginiana subsp. glauca (S. Watson) Staudt, F. virginiana subsp. grayana (Vilm. ex J. Gay) Staudt, and F. virginiana subsp. platypetala (Rydb.) Staudt from North America, F. chiloensis subsp. chiloensis f. chiloensis and F. chiloensis subsp. chiloensis f. patagonica from South America, F. chiloensis subsp. sandwicensis (Decne.) Staudt from Hawaii, as well as F. xananassa subsp. cuneifolia (Nutt ex Howell), and F. xananassa subsp. ananassa. A total of 108 bands were scored among all accessions using the five SSR primer pairs, for a mean of 21.6 bands per primer pair with 3-8 bands in individual accessions. Cluster analysis and principal coordinate analysis using Jaccard similarity coefficients based on presence or absence of bands supported the separation of F. virginiana and F. chiloensis as distinct species. The various F. virginiana subspecies were not distinguishable. The two South American forms of F. chiloensis subsp. chiloensis are very similar to each other and distinct from the North American subspecies. The F. chiloensis subsp. sandwicensis accessions were distinct from other taxonomic classes. The F. xananassa cultivars clustered most closely with the South American F. chiloensis supporting the origin of F. xananassa primarily from South American rather than North American F. chiloensis. While the North and South American F. chiloensis subspecies should remain separated based on their molecular distinction, consideration should be given to classifying F. chiloensis subsp. pacifica and subsp. lucida as different forma of a single North American F. chiloensis subspecies, rather than as separate subspecies. This is similar to the current classification of the two South American forma of F. chiloensis subsp. chiloensis (L.) Mill. Similarly, the F. virginiana subspecies should be reclassified as forms of a single subspecies, F. virginiana subsp. virginiana, rather than separate subspecies.
- Fragaria xananassa
- Interspecies hybridization