Difference Between Blackberry and Boysenberry

Used in everything from pies, jams, and cobblers, blackberries and boysenberries are both delicious juicy fruits that are often mistaken for each other. However, what many fail to understand is that while they belong to the same family and class, they are two distinct fruits.

Blackberries are genuine berries that can trace their origin back to ancient times, although their popularity increased noticeably during the 18th and the 19th century. Boysenberries, however, were the result of a successful experiment conducted by Rudolph Boysen in 1920 – he crossed the blackberry, raspberry and loganberry to produce the boysenberry, which came into the market during 1930. Blackberry plants grow erect and vertical, while the boysenberry plant is spreads and grows more horizontally.

Smaller and sweeter in taste than the boysenberry, blackberries are a bit like pinecones in shape, while boysenberries are completely round, large, and far more fragile than the hardy blackberry. Boysenberries have a tinge of purple in their colours and contain small seeds, while blackberries are pure black and have larger seeds.

Containing less fat than blackberries, boysenberries are often touted as the healthier of the two. A 100 gm of blackberries will contain 43 calories, while the same amount of boysenberries contains 50 calories. A 100 gm of boysenberries also contains more carbohydrate than the same amount of blackberries (12.19 g carbohydrate in the former, 9.61 g in the latter).


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    An edible fruit belong to the Rubus genus in the Rosaceae family, blackberries are native to the temperate Northern Hemisphere and South America. In botanical terminology, blackberries are not a berry per se – rather, they are classified as an aggregate fruit, which is made up of numerous drupelets.

    There is concrete evidence that blackberries have been consumed by human beings for thousands of years, making it a fruit that has been eaten since ancient times. The berries are red when they are unripe, and when they ripen, they turn black. In addition to containing plenty of antioxidants, blackberries are also rich in nutrients like anthocyanins, fiber, salicylic acid, and ellagic acid.

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    A large aggregate fruit of a dark maroon to deep purple colour, boysenberries are a cross between three types of berries – a Common Blackberry (Rubus fruticosus), the European Raspberry (Rubus idaeus), and a Loganberry (Rubus × loganobaccus).

    An abandoned experiment by a man named Rudolph Boysen, the boysenberry plant was rescued by George M. Darrow and Walter Knott, nurtured back to health, and then marketed with great success. The berry is rich in antioxidants, Vitamin C, fiber, and ellagic acid which fight cancer, viruses and bacteria.

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