Terms of flowering honey plants in the USA and Canada

According to observations of naturalists and beekeepers.

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Common name:

Western thimbleberry

Scientific name: Rubus parviflorus.
Other common name(s): Thimbleberry.
Life form: Shrub.
Flowering time: 16 - 23 days.
Please select your location to display the flowering period of the plant in your area.

NECTAR PRODUCTION:
30 kilograms per ha

SOURCE FOR HONEY BEES:
Major in some areas


General distribution:

In North America, thimbleberry occupies a discontinuous range. It is a widespread native throughout most of western North America, with disjunct populations to the east in the Black Hills of South Dakota and even farther east in the Great Lakes region. Thimbleberry populations are large and widely distributed in western Canada and small and narrowly distributed in eastern Canada. Thimbleberry ranges from Alaska to northern Mexico along the Pacific Coast and is particularly common in the understory of humid Pacific Northwest forests.

The distribution of thimbleberry is narrower and more discontinuous than the above map suggests. In Alaska, thimbleberry occurs only in the coastal regions in the extreme southeastern part of the state, but in California, it occurs as far south as San Diego County. In Nevada, thimbleberry occurs only in the northwestern counties of Washoe, Carson City, and Douglas. In New Mexico and Arizona, thimbleberry is restricted to their common border, occurring primarily in western New Mexico and eastern Arizona. In Ontario, thimbleberry is restricted to the shores of Lake Superior and Lake Huron. Thimbleberry's distribution is thought to be driven by avoidance of aridity. When site conditions were compared in areas with thimbleberry, without thimbleberry, and where thimbleberry was exceptionally abundant, thimbleberry was most common at cool moist sites.


Botanical description:

Thimbleberry grows as an erect, multibranched, leafy deciduous shrub that may reach 10 feet (3 m) tall. Size and distinguishing characteristics relating to leaves, glands, and pubescence can be highly variable. Thimbleberry produces alternate, simple, maple-shaped leaves with 3- to 7-pointed lobes. Leaves generally measure up to 8 inches (20 cm) long and wide and have irregularly serrate margins. Leaf petioles are typically just slightly shorter than leaf blades. Thimbleberry flowers and fruits develop on 2nd-year stems. Flowers are often large (up to 2 inches (5 cm) across) and occur in clusters of 2 to 10 at the branch ends. Fruits are thick, firm, raspberry drupelets.

Thimbleberry often forms clumps or dense thickets through an "extensive network" of rhizomes.


Seasonal development:

Throughout thimbleberry's range, the timing of flower production does not vary much, but aside from flowering dates, little phenological information was available for thimbleberry. In coastal southeastern Alaska and in the Southwest region, typical flowering and fruiting dates were the same, June to July and August to September, respectively. Typical flowering dates were slightly earlier (May to July) in the Great Lakes region. Throughout thimbleberry's range, flowering dates as early as March and as late as August or September were reported.


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