California Blackberry, Rubus ursinus, native
- a dicot in the Rosaceae family -

 
common on Grapevine, Rose, Swamp and Sycamore Trails
California Blackberry flowers in March and AprilCalifornia Blackberry has three leaflets
This California native blooms in late March through April,
producing small sweet black berries by late May and June.

This native vine grows best in moist soils near a water source. The vines become a very dense ground cover when allowed to naturalize. The valley oak riparian forests of old had an understory that had a high concentration of these blackberry vines. Birds, rodents, coyotes, bears and many insects competed with the native people for this early bearing fruit. 

Blackberries need to be BLACK to taste good!
The California Blackberry flowers in March and April, producing small flavorful blackberries by late May and June. Don't eat the red ones - they are tart and sour. The berries turn a deep dark purple, or black, when ripe and ready to eat. The prickles are tiny compared to the non-native Himalayan Blackberry, but you still need to be cautious when picking these tasty delights. 
        Leave some berries for wildlife, okay?

California Blackberry vines have many small prickles
 

Here is a comparison between the stems of our native California Blackberry and the introduced Himalayan Blackberry variety.
 
 

rust is a common fungus that infects many berries and rosesRust is a colorful fungus on the underside of 
California Blackberry leaves in the early part of the growing season. Fungus was a common source of dyes for Native Americans, used to color cloth and other articles of everyday life.

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