Rubus probus – Wild Raspberry (plant)
Australia has 8 species of native Raspberry. Rubus probus is a pinnate leaved species, with 5-petalled flowers and bright red fruits which are considerably broader than they are long. It is widespread in Queensland, from Helidon Hills to Cooktown, and also in New Guinea. It was named in 1923, strangely enough, from Puerto Rico, where it is naturalised. Apparently, seeds were sent to the USA in the early part of this century and then distributed. It obviously thrived in Puerto Rico. R.probus was previously known by the name of R.fraxinifolius, but that species, occurs only in south-east Asia and Indonesia.Rubrus probus is a large shrub with a scrambling habit. It has been known as R. muelleri and R. fraxinifolius although the latter name is now accepted as applying to another species from Asia (taken from ANPSA).
Native to Eastern Australia, Rubus probus is a rampant grower with prickly canes; if left unchecked, it can form impenetrable thickets. The leaves are bright green and pinnate in form usually with 5 elliptical leaflets tapering to a point. Leaflets are about 50 – 60 mm long by 20 – 30 mm wide with toothed margins. The white, 5-petalled flowers occur in spring and summer and are followed by the bright red fruits which have clusters of juicy, pink to bright red lobes forming the berry, some 10 – 30 mm in diameter (Australian Native Plants Society).
It is a hardy plant for larger properties in a sunny position and it responds well to pruning so it can be kept to manageable proportions if regularly maintained. It requires adequate water and well drained soils to perform well. The fruit has a sharp berry-raspberry flavour, that can be quite delicious. A great feature of growing from seed is selection of superior tasting individuals and domesticating this species.
Care and Cultivation of Rubus probus
Full sun to part shade. Tolerant of a wide range of soil and climatic conditions. Prune to shape, makes a great screen/privacy hedge. Fertilise for more growth and fruit.
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