Berries

Four fruits that are true berries (size not to scale). Clockwise from right: Concord grapes, persimmon, red gooseberries, red currants (top)

The botanical definition of a berry is a fleshy fruit produced from a single ovary.

The berry is the most common type of fleshy fruit in which the entire ovary wall ripens into an edible pericarp. They may have one or more carpels with a thin covering and fleshy interiors. The seeds are usually embedded in the flesh of the ovary. In everyday English, “berry” is a term for any small edible fruit.

These “berries” are usually juicy, round or semi-oblong, brightly coloured, sweet or sour, and don’t have a stone or pit, although many seeds may be present.┬áMany berries, such as the tomato, are edible, but others in the same family, such as the fruits of the deadly nightshade (Atropa belladonna) and the fruits of the potato (Solanum tuberosum) are poisonous to humans. Some berries such as Capsicum have space rather than pulp around their seeds.

CATEGORIES UNDER BERRIES IN INFORMED FARMERS

A-Z OF BERRIES

BERRY MANAGEMENT

BERRY MARKETS

ECONOMICS OF BERRIES

OTHER BERRY PRODUCTS


Species shown in blue indicate direct links to information on these berries.

Rubus

Blackberry, of which there are many species and hybrids, such as dewberry, boysenberry, olallieberry, and tayberry (genus Rubus)

Cloudberry (Rubus chamaemorus)

Loganberry (Rubus loganobaccus)

Raspberry, several species (genus Rubus)

Salmonberry (Rubus spectabilis)

Thimbleberry (Rubus parviflorus)

Wineberry (Rubus phoenicolasius)

True berries

The true berries are dominated by the family Ericaceae, many of which are hardy in the subarctic:

Bearberry (Arctostaphylos spp.)

Bilberry or whortleberry (Vaccinium spp.)

Blueberry (Vaccinium spp.)

Crowberry (Empetrum spp.)

Cranberry (Vaccinium spp.)

Falberry (Vaccinium spp.)

Huckleberry (Vaccinium spp.)

Lingonberry (Vaccinium vitis-idaea)

Strawberry Tree (Arbutus unedo), not to be confused with the Strawberry (Fragaria)

Other

Barberry (Berberis; Berberidaceae)

Currant (Ribes spp.; Grossulariaceae), red, black, and white types

Elderberry (Sambucus; Caprifoliaceae)

Gooseberries

Gooseberry (Ribes spp.; Grossulariaceae)

Hackberry (Celtis spp.; Cannabaceae)

Honeysuckle: the berries of some species (called honeyberries) are edible, others are poisonous (Lonicera spp.; Caprifoliaceae)

Mulberry (Morus spp.; Moraceae)

Mayapple (Podophyllum spp.; Berberidaceae)

Nannyberry or sheepberry (Viburnum spp.; Caprifoliaceae)

Oregon grape (Mahonia aquifolium; Berberidaceae)

Sea Buckthorn

Ugniberry (Ugni molinae; Myrtaceae)

Wolfberry/Gojiberry (Lycium barbarum, Lycium Chinense; Solanaceae)