by Science Staff
Not peer reviewed
Last modified: 03/15/2013
Key to the species of Rubus
1. Stems erect, 1-2 m tall, unarmed; leaves simple, lobed; fruit depressed...Rubus odoratus
1. Stems prostrate or erect, 0.1-2.5 m tall, armed with prickles and/or bristles; leaves compound; fruit subglobose to elongate...2
2. First-year stem (primocane) leaves ternate or digitately or
pinnately quinate, whitish beneath; petals inconspicuous, generally less than 7
mm long, spatulate or obovate, green-white, white, or rose-pink; ripe fruit
yellow, amber, red, purple, or purple-black, readily separated from the
2. Primocane leaves ternate or digitately quinate or 7-foliate, green to gray-green beneath; petals showy, generally at least 7 mm long, obovate to nearly orbicular, white to pale pink; ripe fruit dark purple to black, not separating from the receptacle...5
3. Inflorescences many-flowered and paniculiform; calyces and
pedicels densely covered with reddish gland-tipped hairs...Rubus phoenicolasius
3. Inflorescences few-flowered, corymbiform, umbelliform, or short-racemose; calyces gray-tomentose and minutely glandular-pubescent...4
4. Pedicels with stout curved prickles, not glandular; canes
arching to decumbent, often rooting at the tip; fruit usually black...Rubus occidentalis
4. Pedicels with straight weak bristles, also finely glandular; canes arching, not rooting at the tip; fruit usually red...Rubus idaeus
Note: The hybrid between R. occidentalis and R. idaeus is known as Rubus ×neglecta.
5. Leaflets pinnately lobed or incised nearly to the midrib;
calyx lobes with firm prickles...Rubus
5. Leaflets merely toothed or at most shallowly lobed; calyx lobes unarmed (may be glandular-setose)...6
9. Terminal leaflet of trifoliate flowering-stem (floricane)
leaves somewhat ovate, with a broadly rounded to subcordate base and sharply
acute to long-acuminate tip...Rubus
9. Terminal leaflet of trifoliate floricane leaves oblong to oblanceolate or obovate, with narrow to broadly cuneate base and obtuse to very abruptly and inconspicuously acuminate tip...Rubus enslenii
12. Leaflets oblanceolate to obovate, broadest well above the
middle, densely and closely white to gray-tomentose beneath...Rubus cuneifolius
12. Leaflets lanceolate to oblong or ovate, not gray or white beneath...Rubus pensilvanicus
List of Rubus Species
- Rubus allegheniensis s. l.
- Rubus bifrons
- Rubus canadensis s.l.
- Rubus cuneifolius s.l.
- Rubus flagellaris s.l.
- Rubus hispidus s.l.
- Rubus idaeus
- Rubus laciniatus
- Rubus occidentalis
- Rubus odoratus
- Rubus pensilvanicus s.l.
- Rubus phoenicolasius
- Rubus pubescens
- Rubus setosus s.l.
- Rubus x neglectus (R. occidentalis × R. idaeus)