Dewberries are from the genus Rubus in the rose family Roscaceae. Found in Northern Europe, North America and Canada. The bush are spring plants identical to raspberries, blackberries.
They grow easily and spread rapidly like weeds. The perennial plant has prickles, 5 toothed leaflets with arching stems close to the ground. Individual plants are either male or female with white petal flowers.
The fruits are not true berries however they produce nice fruits. The fruits are purple to black, edible and sweet. The fruits start out as green to red then deep purplish blue. The stems trail along the ground covering a large space.
Species of Dewberries
Species of dewberries are based on geographical locations they grow. We have upland dewberries, pacific blackberry. Others are Northern dewberries, swamp dewberries, Aberdeen dewberries and European Dewberries.
- Upland dewberries
- Pacific blackberry
- Northern dewberries
- Swamp dewberries
- Aberdeen dewberries
- European Dewberries
Uses of Dewberry
Dewberries grow white flowers around March that become small green berries. Dewberries are used to make jam, jelly or pies. Although the fruit is more acidic than blackberries they are sometimes eaten raw, used to make cobbler.
- Used to make jam
- eaten raw
- Made into cobbler
Growing Dewberries in the garden
The Bush grows wild and are an invasive species. They require adequate space because the roots sprawl across the ground. The first step is to buy seedlings or cutting from a reputable nursery.
There are also online resources to order the seeds. Make sure the site is good quality, well drained easily accessible. The location should have at least 8 hours of sun daily. Once you purchase the seedling dig a hole to accommodate the roots then backfill and cover with top soil.
Provide adequate space for each plant at a distance of 4 to 5 feet apart. Retain the soil moisture and water frequently. Avoid soggy soil and over the base with mulch to control the temperature.
The plants require a support system therefore use a stake to tie the dewberry plant. This will effectively control the tendency to spread and grow in different directions.
- Provide adequate space
- Purchase seedlings or cutting from a nursery
- Prepare the soil
- Soil composition is well-drained, good soil
- At least 8 – 10 hours of sun daily
- dig a hole to accommodate the roots
- Backfill and cover with top soil
- Provide adequate space 4 to 5 feet apart
- Water regularly
Caring for Dewberries
The hardy plants require very little maintenance.it takes at least 4 years to fruit and need very little fertilizer. Make sure they have adequate sun and water. Avoid waterlogged areas because they are harmful to the plant.
Pests and Diseases
The leaves are susceptible to peach blossom moths and larvae attack.
They ripen 6 weeks from last freezing temperature. Make sure the fruits are ripe they should be deep purple to glossy black. Wear protective gear like gloves, long sleeves to avoid sharp pricks.
Use a plastic container or bag and a stick. Dewberry plants are bush so use the stick to probe for anything hiding in the bush. Grasp the berries gently to avoid crushing them. Pull them slightly and pick each individual fruit.