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Rubus vestitus Weihe
Family Rosaceae
Common name: Blackberry

Rubus vestitus Weihe APNI*

Description: Spreading semi-deciduous shrub to 1.4 m high but generally less unless growing through other vegetation. Forms dense thickets. Primocane stems angled with faces furrowed or not, with sparse to dense non-glandular hairs and sometimes with scattered longer glandular hairs, prickles 2–7 (rarely to 10) mm long, mainly on angles, rooting at apex. Floricane similar to primocane but usually hairier and with some glandular hairs particularly amongst inflorescence.

Primocane leaves consisting of 3 or 5 leaflets (sometimes some joined); mature mid primocane leaflets with lower surface sparsely to moderately felted below dense covering of pilose hairs, terminal leaflet usually largest, mostly 4–9 cm long and 3–8 cm wide, petiole 2–9 cm long. Floricane leaves consisting of 3 leaflets, lower surface of mid floricane leaflets similar to lower surface of mid primocane leaflets, lower surface of lower floricane leaflets may be less hairy, terminal leaflet mostly 3.3–9.6 cm long and 2.2–8 cm wide, petiole 1.8–7 cm long.

Inflorescence a pyramidal to cylindrical terminal panicle of flowers. Sepals with or without prickles. Petals 9–17 mm long, 6–11 mm wide, broadly ovate, pale pink fading to white with age, not crumpled. Stamens longer than styles.

Fruit ± globose, initially green, ripening red, maturing black.

Flowering: mainly late spring and summer.

Distribution and occurrence: native of Britain as well as western and central Europe.

Found in grasslands to forests. In New South Wales it is only known from the Central Tablelands.
NSW subdivisions: *NC, *CC, *CT, *ST
Other Australian states: *Vic. *Tas.
AVH map***

Introduced for its edible fruit but now a weed of agriculture, forestry and the environment. This species is part of the Rubus fruticosus L. species aggregate. Victorian occurrences of this species have a different DNA fingerprint to plants found in New South Wales.

Text by John Hosking, 17 June 2009
Taxon concept: Evans et al., Australian Systematic Botany 20: 187-251 (2007). Previously described in Harden & Rodd (1990) Flora of NSW 1.

APNI* Provides a link to the Australian Plant Name Index (hosted by the Australian National Botanic Gardens) for comprehensive bibliographic data
***The AVH map option provides a detailed interactive Australia wide distribution map drawn from collections held by all major Australian herbaria participating in the Australian Virtual Herbarium project.
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