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Rubus occidentalis (Black Raspberry)

Black Raspberry, Thimbleberry, Rubus occidentalis var. pallidus

Rubus occidentalis, Black Raspberry, Thimbleberry, Rubus occidentalis var. pallidus, Black Berries, Fruiting Shrub

Rubus occidentalis (Black Raspberry) is a multi-stemmed, thorny, deciduous shrub with long, slender, arching canes clothed with blue-green, pinnately compound leaves turning to shades of yellow in the fall. In late spring to early summer, clusters of white, rose-like flowers are on display. Rich in nectar, they attract many pollinators including hummingbirds, butterflies, and bees. The blossoms give way to an abundance of round, edible, red berries which mature to black. The berries are flavorful and great for fresh eating, canning and baking. Songbirds, mammals, and black bears feast on them. During the winter, birds and small mammals eat the seeds left from the rotted fruits. Unlike other brambles, Black Raspberry does not spread by underground rhizomes, but via its arching canes that root wherever they touch the ground. Rubus occidentalis is a species native to eastern North America.

  • Grows up to 3-6 ft. tall (90-180 cm) and 4-8 ft. wide (120-240 cm).
  • A full sun to part shade lover, this plant is best grown in organically rich, slightly acidic, moist but well-drained soils. Raspberries dislike waterlogged soils and shallow chalky soils. For best results, plant in a sheltered, sunny position. They will tolerate light shade, but the yield is likely to be reduced.
  • In late winter, remove any canes damaged by winter and thin, as needed, the remaining canes.
  • No serious disease issues. Keep an eye out for honey fungus.
  • Propagate by division, tip layering or digging up suckers.
  • Native to North America.

Requirements

Hardiness 4 - 8
Plant Type Fruits, Shrubs
Plant Family Rosaceae
Genus Rubus
Common names Thimbleberry, Raspberry, Black Raspberry
Exposure Full Sun, Partial Sun
Season of Interest Spring (Late)
Summer (Early, Late)
Fall
Height 3' - 6'
(90cm - 180cm)
Spread 4' - 8'
(120cm - 240cm)
Spacing 72" - 96"
(180cm - 240cm)
Maintenance Average
Water Needs Average
Soil Type Loam, Sand
Soil pH Acid, Neutral
Soil Drainage Moist but Well-Drained, Well-Drained
Characteristics Showy, Fruit & Berries
Native Plants United States, New York, New Jersey, New Hampshire, Maryland, Massachusetts, Maine, Delaware, Connecticut, Vermont, Rhode Island, Pennsylvania, Rocky Mountains, Southwest, Southeast, Midwest, Northeast, South Dakota, Wisconsin, Ohio, Minnesota, North Dakota, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Nebraska, Kansas, Michigan, Missouri, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, Virginia, West Virginia, Alabama, Arkansas, Georgia, Kentucky, Tennessee, Oklahoma, Colorado
Attracts Bees, Birds, Butterflies, Hummingbirds
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Alternative Plants to Consider

Rubus ursinus (California Blackberry)
Rubus canadensis (Smooth Blackberry)
Rubus odoratus (Flowering Raspberry)
Rubus deliciosus (Delicious Raspberry)
Rubus calycinoides (Creeping Raspberry)
Rubus fruticosus ‘Triple Crown’ (Blackberry)
While every effort has been made to describe these plants accurately, please keep in mind that height, bloom time, and color may differ in various climates. The description of these plants has been written based on numerous outside resources.
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Requirements

Hardiness 4 - 8
Plant Type Fruits, Shrubs
Plant Family Rosaceae
Genus Rubus
Common names Thimbleberry, Raspberry, Black Raspberry
Exposure Full Sun, Partial Sun
Season of Interest Spring (Late)
Summer (Early, Late)
Fall
Height 3' - 6'
(90cm - 180cm)
Spread 4' - 8'
(120cm - 240cm)
Spacing 72" - 96"
(180cm - 240cm)
Maintenance Average
Water Needs Average
Soil Type Loam, Sand
Soil pH Acid, Neutral
Soil Drainage Moist but Well-Drained, Well-Drained
Characteristics Showy, Fruit & Berries
Native Plants United States, New York, New Jersey, New Hampshire, Maryland, Massachusetts, Maine, Delaware, Connecticut, Vermont, Rhode Island, Pennsylvania, Rocky Mountains, Southwest, Southeast, Midwest, Northeast, South Dakota, Wisconsin, Ohio, Minnesota, North Dakota, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Nebraska, Kansas, Michigan, Missouri, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, Virginia, West Virginia, Alabama, Arkansas, Georgia, Kentucky, Tennessee, Oklahoma, Colorado
Attracts Bees, Birds, Butterflies, Hummingbirds
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Do I Need?
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