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Woody > Rubus > Rubus fruticosus > Rubus fruticosus

Rubus fruticosus


Origin:  North Europe.
            Mike's Opinion

this is Mike


Rubus fruticosus is a very hardy plant that grows in a wide variety of conditions and thus it can be quite an aggressive plant and in some cases quite invasive. Wild blackberries are often harvested by locals for jams, jellies, pies and fresh fruit but they are not a viable crop: the cultivars are much more productive.

Michael Pascoe, NDP., ODH., CLT., MSc. (Plant Conservation)


Shrub (deciduous), Vine
USDA Hardiness Zone
Canadian Hardiness Zone
Temperature (°C)
Temperature (°F)
1 - 3 m
1.5 - 4 m
Description and Growing Information
Flowering Period
General Description
Deciduous to semi-ever-green large vine like shrub with green, palmately compound leaves, with 3 - 5 heavily veined leaflets that turn green-yellow in autumn. Clusters of white five petaled flowers in summer and clusters of blackberries in autumns.
Principally used as a natural plant in landscape restoration projects and to attract wildlife. There are many cultivars that are better suited to fruit production in the garden than the species.
R. fruticosus will grow in partial to full shade and tolerates a wide variety of soils. However if flourishes in full sun and well drained, moist soil, with a high organic content. It has a very deep root system and is drought tolerant once established. Plant in early spring before the young canes break dormancy.
Vertical, mound shape, with procumbent canes.
ID Characteristic
Has a cluster of deep purple/black many drupelet fruit. It is a large massing plant with arching canes covered in thorns. Green leaves that are palmately compound with clusters of white/pink five petaled flowers.
Japanese beetles and verticillium wilt might be problematic.
Found in disturbed areas, orchards, stream banks, farmlands, ditch banks, roadsides, woodlands, and hedgerows.
Bark/Stem Description
Young primocanes are green to light brown while floricanes are brown with exfoliating bark.
Flower/Leaf Bud Description
About 5 mm, green, coned shaped and glabrous.
Leaf Description
Palmately compound leaves with 3 - 5 heavily veined leaflets, orbicular, ovate, double serrate leaflets that are alternate. Deep green leaves that turn green-yellow in autumn
Flower Description
Perfect flowers, 2-3 cm, with five petals that are white or pale pink, blooming from May to September.
Fruit Description
Blackberries are a succulent, large fruit that is aggregate with a head of many drupelets, each containing one seed. Drupelets narrowly to broadly D-shaped or rounded triangular ripening to purple-black from green.
Colour Description
The flowers are white to pale pink, young bark is green to light brown and older bark is dark brown. Leaves are deep green and turn a green-yellow colour in the autumn.
Texture Description
The plant has a coarse texture.
Notable Specimens
Great Flat Lode, Redruth, United Kingdom.
Tip layer in the summer when the plant is actively growing. Select young vigorous shoots which grow in an arch up and away from the central part of the plant and place the tip in a 10 cm hole, with about 10 cm of the tip extending out the far side of the hole: backfill. Rooting will occur in the autumn, sever from the parent plant and transfer in the spring. The seed require stratification at 3°C for 30 days and are best sown in early autumn using a cold frame. They should be planted out as early as possible the following year when they are large enough to handle.
Megan McConnell Hughes. Better Homes and Gardens: Vegetable Fruit & Herb Gardening. United States of America: Wiley & Sons, 2010 Brickell, Christopher, eds. Canadian Encyclopedia of Gardening. Singapore: D.K, 2004.