Thursday, March 5, 2009
The highbush or sawtooth blackberries (Rubus argutus [syn. betulifolius]) are starting to show some color (a little early it seems) in the Back Woods. And, of course we all know what follows is a juicy aggregate of drupelets we call a berry. Yum! This particular blackberry species is found throughout the Southeast in wet or dry areas and is commonly found in disturbed areas. Blackberries of all species are a very important group of plants to wildlife. The fruit is eaten by mammals and birds, the foliage is browsed deer and rabbits, and the thickets are refuge and nesting sites to many kinds of animals.