South of the Fraser

Surrey, Delta, White Rock and Langleys

Thimbleberry season

Thimbleberries in Bear Creek park

From a distance they look almost identical to the salmonberry. They're the same size, red, and grow on shrubs of about the same height and structure. They also grow in the same sorts of areas: clearings in the bush, along paths and on the edge of the woods.

Thimbleberries (Rubus parviflorus) have smaller drupelets than their salmonberries or raspberry cousins. The flower is white with five petals, whereas the salmonberry's is purple. Here's the Wikipedia entry.

The fruit is very very soft. It's difficult to pull them off the bush without crushing them beyond recognition. This year they seem sweeter than the salmonberries.

As always, remember to leave some for hobos and other critters.

 A bee bumbles its way into a thimbleberry flower at Fleetwood park in May

Roses thrown into the creek: what's the story here?

There must be a story here: a jilted lover, a spurned advance, a wedding gone awry... who knows?

Pink roses tossed over the bridge into King Creek at Bear Creek park


This lovely bouquet was spotted in Bear Creek park, in King Creek just off a bridge. It's a short, angry stomp from Bear Creek Gardens, a favourite place for wedding photography.

Salmonberries: an early summer treat

Salmonberry - ripe and unripe


It didn't seem like summer when Juneuary gave way to Julember, but plants gotta bloom and fruit, and fruit they are.

Salmonberries [Rubus Spectabilis, Wikipedia article here] look similar to commercially produced raspberries. They're common in disturbed areas along paths or clearings at the edge of the big trees. Green Timbers Park in Surrey has a trail called the Salmonberry Trail, although most trails through wooded areas will have at least a few, often within arms reach. The bush can grow up to about eight feet high and the delicate purple flower is a sign of Spring. The fruit ripens in June. Most of the berries will fall off (if not eaten) by mid-July, but can last longer.


Read more: Salmonberries: an early summer treat

Pacific bleeding hearts

No, they're not left-wing namby-pambies munching soy-flavoured lecithin. Pacific bleeding hearts are a flower native to this area and in bloom right now.

Pacific bleeding heart near the Surrey Nature Centre

Dicentra formosa are about a foot tall. I usually see them in the forested areas in Surrey parks where some light gets through.

Ready for the elves to walk through - bleeding hearts make a magical ground cover 

Pacific bleeding hearts

Pacific bleeding hearts

The plant grows from a rhizome, is a perennial, and apparently will also bloom in the Fall. More about this plant on Wikipedia.


Info on South of the Fraser River: Surrey, Delta, White Rock, City of Langley, Township of Langley, Fort Langley. Maybe a bit of Abbotsford, just for fun.

This site is experimental. See About (top right) for more, or Blog for meta-information. The working goal is to create an almanac of items, tidbits of information and methods of gathering information.

Right now the site is biased to just south of the Fraser River, within the northern reaches of great City of Surrey, but there is some foraging further afield.

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