The bush grows as a bramble bush, with bright red bristles and fine, red thorns on red cane stalks that can grow up to 8 feet (2 ½ metres) tall.
When the tops of canes bend over from their own weight, a new plant will start growing from where the branch has touched the ground.
The green, (generally) heart-shaped leaves are white underneath.
Wineberries grow on 2 year old canes. Small white flowers appear first, then berries about 2 months after that.
The Wineberries shelter inside fuzzy leaves (a “calyx”) at first. When the calyx opens, the berries then ripen from green to yellow to orange to deep blackish, glossy red. The berries will feel slightly sticky when ripe.
Though hollow inside, Wineberries are very juicy. They are tarter than raspberries, without the pronounced taste of raspberries or blackberries.
The seeds are best strained out of jams or any kind of purée made with the berries, as they are hard.
10 cups of fruit = 5 cups of juice
Wineberries are native to Asia.
They have naturalized themselves to eastern North America. They were brought there from Europe in the late 1800s as a garden plant, but escaped cultivation.
Called “Wineberry” because of their colour they are not the same as the Wineberry tree (Aristotelia serrata) native to New Zealand.