Cloudberry (Rubus chamaemorus L)

Cloudberry (Rubus chamaemorus L)Also known as: bake-apple, salmonberry

flowerforest wetland/bog  tundra/barren (alpine areas)

Bloom time: June – July

Additional photos:

General: This low, creeping perennial dies back each winter.

Leaves & Twigs:

  • Cloudberry stalks vary in height from 5-25 cm; and the erect, simple stems are hairless and do not branch.
  • The broad, somewhat leathery leaves are long-stalked, round to kidney-shaped and indented (forming three-to-five shallow lobes).

Flowers & Fruits:

  • Solitary flowers (1-3 cm across) have five white petals at the tip of the stem.
  • Cloudberry plants are male or female, but only the female plant bears fruit – hard red berries that turn yellowish or amber-coloured when ripe in late July.

Habitat: This plant prefers moist tundra, bog habitats and heaths. Usually found with sphagnum mosses or lichens, it is widespread across the low arctic and boreal forest regions.

PlantWatch Pointers: Select a typical patch of plants, if the plants are very abundant, mark off a l-metre-square section to observe.

To Observe:

  • First bloom: when the first flowers are open in the observed plants (3 places).
  • Mid bloom: when 50% of the flowers are open in the observed plants.

Distribution Map:

Distribution Map

This species is monitored in:

  • Alberta
  • Manitoba
  • Newfoundland and Labrador
  • Northwest Territories
  • Nunavut
  • Quebec
  • Saskatchewan
  • Yukon

Cloudberry is called a “pioneer plant” because it quickly colonizes an area following fire or logging; however, the plants don’t flower until about seven years after germination.