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Dewberry

Rubus caesius

  • Family: Rose Family – Rosaceae
  • Growing form and height: Shrub. 0.5–2 m (1.5–7 ft.).
  • Flower: fairly large, regular (actinomorphic). Calyx-lobes five, long-tapered and sharp-pointed, hairy. Petals usu. 5, free, spreading, approx. 10 mm (0.4 in.) long, roundish, white, sometimes sharp-pointed. Carpels free, many. Stamens numerous. Flowers borne in racemose clusters.
  • Leaves: Alternate. Stalked, usually trifoliolate. Terminal leaflet stalked, lateral ones unequal-sided. All leaflets sharp-pointed, hairy on both sides, toothed, teeth tipped.
  • Fruit: An aggregate of drupes, bluish-black with a waxy bloom.
  • Habitat: Forest margins, rocky broadleaf woods, waterside thickets, coppices.
  • Flowering time: June–September.

Dewberry belongs to the genus Rubus (brambles, blackberries) which is a large and diverse, cosmopolitan group. It is taxonomically difficult as many species hybridise. The brambles are herbs or suckering shrubs. The aerial shoots may also be creeping or scrambling, and are often prickly. The leaves are usually compound or lobed. The fruit is an aggregate of drupes. Some of the species produce economically important berries, and many of these are cultivated.

Like raspberry, dewberry has biennial stems. They are arching and branched, bluish, covered with greyish waxy bloom, and hairless or sparsely pubescent. Dewberry spreads efficiently by runner-like shoots. In the Aland Island, where dewberry is common, also rare and protected Rubus pruinosus can be encountered. It has black berries.

Dewberry hybridises with raspberry (R. idaeus). The hybrids are more erect and pricklier than dewberry. In addition, dewberry hybridises with stone bramble (R. saxatilis) resulting in a sparsely prickled, herbaceous plant with broad leaflets. Fruits of dewberry are edible, but not as tasty as raspberries.

Other species from the same genus
Other species from the same family
Flowers from the same family

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