Herb: Swamp Dewberry

Latin name: Rubus hispidus

Family: Rosaceae (Rose Family)

Medicinal use of Swamp Dewberry:

The plant has astringent properties. The juice of the plant has been used in the treatment of diarrhoea and dysentery. An infusion of the fruits in warm water has been used as a vermifuge. An infusion of the roots has been used in the treatment of consumption, coughs and fevers.

Description of the plant:


20 cm
(7 3/4 inch)

to July

Habitat of the herb:

Moist or dry open soils, ditches, swales or open woods.

Edible parts of Swamp Dewberry:

Fruit - raw or cooked. A sour flavour. They are mainly used in preserves. A reasonable flavour, but it is not worth picking in the presence of better varieties. The fruit is about 12mm in diameter.

Other uses of the herb:

A purple to dull blue dye is obtained from the fruit. A good ground cover plant.

Propagation of Swamp Dewberry:

Seed - requires stratification and is best sown in early autumn in a cold frame. Stored seed requires one month stratification at about 3C and is best sown as early as possible in the year. Prick out the seedlings when they are large enough to handle and grow on in a cold frame. Plant them out into their permanent positions in late spring of the following year. Cuttings of half-ripe wood, July/August in a frame. Tip layering in July. Plant out in autumn. Division in early spring or just before leaf-fall in the autumn.

Cultivation of the herb:

Moist or dry open soils, ditches, swales or open woods.

Known hazards of Rubus hispidus:

None known

Plant information taken from the Plants For A Future.