Pegasus was raised in 1977 from the cross Redgauntlet x Gorella.
The berries are very attractive with a regular shape and bright, glossy skin finish. The skin is strong, giving good resistance to damage during handling. The texture is juicy and the flavour pleasantly sweet, but not strong.
Yield & Fruit Size
In trials Pegasus has consistently produced a class 1 yield within 10% either side of that for Elsanta. Fruit size is also similar to Elsanta and it is maintained well in the second cropping year.
Pegasus tends to darken more quickly than Elsanta post harvest but in other respects the shelf life is similar and it has been successfully test marketed to supermarkets as well as wholesalers. The lower inputs required to grow Pegasus also make it attractive to pick-your-own growers.
The plants are moderately vigorous with an erect habit. The fruit is well displayed and easy to pick. Best trial results have been obtained where Pegasus has been grown on medium or heavy soils.
Pegasus has a good level of resistance to both wilt (Verticillium dahliae) and crown rot (Phytophthora cactorum). It has some race specific resistance to red core (Phytophthora fragariae). It is moderately susceptible to powdery mildew (Sphaerotheca macularis) but other airborne fungal leaf diseases have not been observed to cause problems in field plantings.
Use of the Variety
Pegasus is a dessert variety and is particularly useful where there are problems with wilt (Verticillium dahliae) and/or crown rot (Phytophthora cactorum). Although the fruit is slightly softer than Elsanta, Pegasus has the advantages of not being prone to produce distorted green tips, or to splitting in a wet season. The inherent disease resistance of Pegasus means that it can be grown satisfactorily using a lower input system than that necessary for Elsanta.