Botany Lesson – Blackberry

Blackberry botany illustration watercolor

Blackberry botany illustration watercolor

The blackberry is a shrub in the rose family. The rose family includes apples, pears, quinces, medlars, loquats, almonds, peaches, apricots, plums, cherries, strawberries, raspberries, sloes, and roses among the crop plants belonging to the family.

The blackberry is an interesting fruit because it develops a large amount of tiny fruits called drupelets. A drupe is a fleshy fruit that develops a stony coating around the seed. So when you bite into the fruit, you can get a bit of a crunch, with the stony parts of the seed sometimes sticking in your teeth. The defining characteristic of a drupe is the stony pit. A peach, cherry, coffee, mango, olive, date, coconut, apricot, nectarine and plum are also drupes. So a blackberry has many small drupes, which we call drupelets. That’s kinda cute if you think about it.

The blackberry’s scientific name is Rubus. Rubus is a large and diverse genus of flowering plants in the rose family, Rosaceae, with 250–700 species. Raspberries, blackberries, and dewberries are common, widely distributed members of the genus.

Kingdom
Plantae – Plants
Subkingdom  
racheobionta – Vascular plants
Superdivision
Spermatophyta – Seed plants
Division
Magnoliophyta – Flowering plants
Class
Magnoliopsida – Dicotyledons
Subclass
Rosidae
Order
Rosales
Family
Rosaceae – Rose family
Genus
Rubus L. – blackberry 

Here is a black and white version you can print out to color and label yourself.

Quick Quiz

Label the following parts to the blackberry:

  1. Petal
  2. Anther
  3. Stigma
  4. Pedicel
  5. Ovule
  6. Sepal
  7. Drupelet
  8. Aggregate Fruit
  9. Flower Bud
  10. Apex
  11. Midrib
  12. Lateral Vein
  13. Remains of Style
  14. Remains of Sepal
  15. Lamina (blade)
BlackBerry Black and white

Black and white illustration of the blackberry

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