7 Fascinating Berry Facts You Need to Know

Updated: Apr. 12, 2024

Brush up on your berry facts and boost your knowledge of the fruits you love! Learn which fruits are (and are not) considered berries.

Elderberry Bushes Attract Backyard Birds

cedar waxwings elderberry bushesCourtesy Brian Machanic
Cedar waxwings feed on elderberries

This one of our berry facts is for the bird lovers. One of the best ways to bring in birds to your backyard is to plant bushes with berries. Birds that don’t usually visit feeders—such as stunning cedar waxwings—will readily eat fruit. Elderberry shrubs are known to feed more than 30 bird species, such as cedar waxwings, northern mockingbirds and gray catbirds. Plus, they provide shelter and nest sites.

No space to grow a berry bush? Consider putting out grape jelly for fruit-eating birds.

Raspberries Are More Colorful Than You Think

Raspberries, berry factsTMB Studio
Not all raspberries are red!

You probably knew raspberries are red, but you probably weren’t aware that they come in more than one color. They’re also available in black, purple, and gold. Black raspberries tend to be smaller than the red variety typically sold in supermarkets, and they are primarily used for cooking.

When you’re done looking at berry facts, check out these fascinating facts about carrots.

Check Restrictions Before Planting These Berries

Bunch Of Ripe Red Currants On Their Stalk With A Green LeafMarholev/Getty Images
Red currants

It was illegal to grow currants (shown above) and gooseberries in the U.S. until 1966. They were hosts to white pine blister rust, a fungus that destroys white pine trees. Some states still have restrictions in place. In those states, growing these berries may require a special permit.

Are American pokeweed berries poisonous?

You Can Grow Blueberries in Your Backyard

Bnbbyc18 Kathleen Osullivan1Courtesy Kathleen Osullivan
Blueberries growing in the garden

Put down the grocery-store blueberries! Growing these sweet fruits in your backyard is easier than you might think, but you need to make sure you have the correct growing conditions. Blueberries prefer soil as acidic as 4 to 5 pH. You may need to test your soil for guidance on adjusting your pH before you plant blueberries.

For more berry facts, check out our blueberry growing guide.

A Banana’s Technical Classification Might Surprise You

Bananat_kimura/Getty Images
Bananas are actually berries!

You’ve probably never thought of a banana as a berry, but it is one. Botanically, a banana is a berry because it is produced from an individual flower containing one ovary. Modern cultivars are seedless.

Grow brandywine viburnum for tie-dye berry clusters.

Cherries Are Not Berries

Fresh Bing Cherries In Box On Blue Wood SurfaceTMB Studio
Bing cherries

Equally surprisingly, despite their rhyming names, a cherry is not a berry—it’s classified as a stone fruit. Other types of stone fruits include peaches, plums and apricots.

Get expert tips on growing cherries.

Some Blackberries Don’t Have Thorns

Bnbbyc16 Peggy Rog 001Courtesy Peggy Rog
These wild blackberries have thorns; the berries turn black when they are ripe.

While they don’t have as many different colors as raspberries, blackberries still technically have two different forms: with or without thorns.

Next, learn how to grow a black chokeberry shrub.

Additional reporting by Emily Hannemann


Penn State Extension, “Raspberry Planting and Care for Home Gardeners
Penn State Extension, “Brambles in the Home Fruit Planting
Bur Oak Land Trust, “Elderberry: For the Birds
University of Minnesota Extension, “Growing Stone Fruits in the Home Garden
Stanford Magazine, “Bananas Are Berries?

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