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Jun 21, 2006 11:59 PM

help me identify a berry!

  • d

Looking to identify a berry--my friend has what she calls "wild raspberries' growing in her yard--I've also seen them growing by the roadside. The berries are small and shaped very much like a small raspberry, but they are shiny/translucent red instead of matte dark red like raspberries. The flavor is mild and a bit sour--not as rich and fruity as a raspberry. It's also a little 'sticky' on the outside--my hands felt a bit gummy when I finished picking. I don't think they're really flavorful enough to bother picking, but was wondering what kind of berry they really are. THanks!

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    1. Those are, in fact, wild raspberries. They used to grow in the stream that went past my high school, and we'd wade and and eat them until we were stained and sick. They can be black as well as red.

      1 Reply
      1. re: Das Ubergeek

        That makes sense. Wild strawberries are smaller than the commercial type.

      2. They do sound like one of the dozens (or if nitpicking some say thousands of varieties of raspberry). That family of plants is called Brambles or in Latin, the genus Rubus-which are blackberries, raspberries, dewberries, thimbleberries, cloudberries, salmonberries, wineberries, loganberries, and nagoonberries. They are part of the rose family which includes the plum, cherry, peach, and apple.

        What part of the country are you in? Are the plants tall or short? What did the flowers look like? When you pick the berry is it hollow inside or not? If hollow what color is the coresponding part on the vine? How are the leaves shaped and grouped? Are they in groups of 3? 5?

        1. Are they salmonberries? Those grow in abundance in the Northwest, and have the clear red, watery berries you describe.

          1. It is most probably a Wineberry, an Asian native, related to the raspberry. They grow all over the East Coast.