The genus Rubus, (especially the blackberries, which are often loosely referred to as Rubus fruticosus agg.) presents some of the most difficult taxonomic problems. This is partly due to the frequency of polyploidy; also to the frequent occurrence of hybridization; and also due to apomixis, where minor differences between plants are preserved because seedlings are genetically identical to their parent. As a result, differences of opinion on the number of species to be recognized from a given region can vary tremendously (for example, a treatment by M. L. Fernald[
] in 1950 recognized 205 species for the northern half of the eastern United States plus parts of southeastern Canada, whilst H. A. Gleason and A. Cronquist in 1991 recognized only 25)[
]. Where possible, a relatively conservative approach is taken here[
Rubus pulcherrimus Hook.f.
Rubus lineatus is a deciduous to semi-evergreen shrub usually growing about 3 metres tall, but sometimes more or less climbing when the stems can be up to 10 metres long[
]. The stems have just a few minute prickles on them[
The edible fruit is sometimes gathered from the wild for local consumption. An ornamental plant, it is sometimes grown in gardens[
E. Asia - China, India, Bhutan, Nepal, Bangladesh, Myanmar, Vietnam, Indonesia
Gregarious on hillsides in the oak forest region of Sikkim at elevations from 1,800 - 2,700 metres[
]. Slopes, valleys, forest understoreys, margins of forests and fallow fields; at elevations from 1,400 - 3,000 metres in China[
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Rubus lineatus is a plant of the warm temperate zone in southern China, moving into the tropics of southeast Asia. In the temperate zone it can only be grown outdoors in those areas with very mild winters.
Easily grown in a good well-drained loamy soil in sun or semi-shade[
]. This species requires a sunny sheltered position[
Plants in this genus are notably susceptible to honey fungus[
Fruit - raw or cooked[
]. The orange to red fruit is 7- 10mm in diameter[
A purple to dull blue dye is obtained from the fruit[
The stems are used to make fences[
Seed - germinates best if given a period of cold stratification prior to sowing in containers. Stored seed requires one month stratification at about 3°c and is best sown as early as possible in the growing season. Prick out the seedlings when they are large enough to handle and grow on until large enough to plant out.
Cuttings of half-ripe wood in a frame[
Tip layering towards the end of the growing season
Division just before the plant comes into new growth or as it enters dormancy[
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