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Trailing Blackberries

Trailing Blackberry, Vancouver Island, BC
Trailing Blackberry, Vancouver Island, BC, Photo By Bud Logan

Trailing Blackberries is the only native blackberry species in British Columbia. It is a low, trailing plant with deciduous leaves and white to pink flowers that produce the small blackberry fruits. It is common in disturbed sites and dry, open forests from low to middle elevations throughout the BC  coast.

The fruits were eaten fresh. The leaves were used for a medicinal tea for stomach ache and the roots were used for a medicinal tea for diarrhea.

Trailing blackberry creates excellent wildlife habitat. Many species of birds eat the berries, as do many types of small mammals and bears. The dense thickets provide critical hiding and escape cover for many birds and mammals. Deer also browse the leaves.

Although most often considered undesirable, trailing blackberry is very valuable as a plant species for habitat reclamation. It thrives in dry or moist, disturbed conditions, so it is natural at preventing erosion and great at bank stabilization. It grows in sun to moderate shade.

Considered a weedy invader, trailing blackberry is a native blackberry that is far less invasive than its introduced cousins. Trailing blackberry may be used to attract birds to your yard. To attract birds, teach them to travel up a trellis, so the berries are easy to access.

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