The boysenberry /ˈbɔɪzənbɛri/ is a cross among the European raspberry (Rubus idaeus), European blackberry (Rubus fruticosus), American dewberry (Rubus aboriginum), and loganberry (Rubus × loganobaccus).
It is a large 8.0-gram (0.28 oz) aggregate fruit, with large seeds and a deep maroon color.
The exact origins of the boysenberry are unclear, but the most definite records trace the plant as it is known today back to grower Rudolph Boysen, who obtained the dewberry/loganberry parent from the farm of John Lubben.
In the late 1920s, George M. Darrow of the USDA began tracking down reports of a large, reddish-purple berry that had been grown on Boysen’s farm in Anaheim, California. Darrow enlisted the help of Walter Knott, another farmer, who was known as a berry expert. Knott had never heard of the new berry, but he agreed to help Darrow in his search.
Darrow and Knott learned that Boysen had abandoned his growing experiments several years earlier and sold his farm. Undaunted by this news, Darrow and Knott headed out to Boysen’s old farm, on which they found several frail vines surviving in a field choked with weeds. They transplanted the vines to Knott’s farm in Buena Park, California, where he nurtured them back to fruit-bearing health. Walter Knott was the first to commercially cultivate the berry in Southern California. He began selling the berries at his farm stand in 1932 and soon noticed that people kept returning to buy the large, tasty berries. When asked what they were called, Knott said, “Boysenberries,” after their originator. His family’s small restaurant and pie business eventually grew into Knott’s Berry Farm. As the berry’s popularity grew, Mrs. Knott began making preserves, which ultimately made Knott’s Berry Farm famous.
By 1940, 599 acres (242 ha) of land in California were dedicated to boysenberries; the number would trail off during World War II but peak again in the 1950s at about 2,400 acres, to the point where boysenberry crops exceeded those of the (previously) more common raspberry and blackberry.By the 1960s, the boysenberry began to fall out of favor due to a combination of being difficult to cultivate, susceptible to fungal diseases in coastal growing areas, and too soft and delicate to easily ship without damage, as well as having a short season of availability compared with newer cultivars.In the 1980s, breeding efforts in New Zealand combined cultivars and germplasm from California with Scottish sources to create five new thornless varieties.
As of the early 2000s, fresh boysenberries were generally only grown for market by smaller California farmers and sold from local farm stands and markets. Most commercially grown boysenberries, primarily from Oregon, are processed into other products such as jam, pie, juice, syrup, and ice cream. Since 2007, a hybrid variety called the “Newberry” or “Ruby Boysen”, was developed to overcome cultivation challenges that led to the decline in boysenberry popularity, and was marketed through farm markets and retailers in California.
As of 2016, New Zealand was the world’s largest producer and exporter of boysenberries.
7 Amazing Benefits
Boysenberries will improve digestive health
Boysenberries contain a significant amount of dietary fiber, which prevents constipation, making your bowel movement easier to manage. One cup of boysenberries contains 7 grams of dietary fiber. The daily recommended dietary fiber intake for men and women are 38 grams and 25 grams, respectively.
Boysenberries may improve brain health
Several components of boysenberries, such as potassium, folate, and various antioxidants are known to provide neurological benefits. Folate has been known to reduce the occurrence of Alzheimer’s disease and cognitive decline. Potassium has been linked to increased blood flow to the brain and enhances cognition, concentration, and neural activity.
Also, boysenberries are an excellent source of vitamin B6. A deficiency has shown depression and nausea. Be sure not to consume too much. The vitamin B6 upper limit is set to 100 milligrams for adults over the age of 18, but adults do not need that much unless directed by the doctor.
Boysenberries are helpful for pregnant women and their babies
Boysenberries are an excellent source of the B-vitamin complex like folate. Folate has shown to help in neural tube formation and red blood cell formation in prenatal babies. A deficiency of folic acid in pregnant women can lead to the birth of underweight infants and may also result in neural tube defects in newborns.
Boysenberries can help maintain a healthy blood pressure
Boysenberries have a phenomenal potassium to sodium ratio, which can contribute to reducing the risk of hypertension. One cup of boysenberries contains 183 milligrams of potassium, compared to 1.3 milligrams of sodium. This helps the blood vessels relax and maintains proper blood pressure. Also, a high potassium diet reduces strain on the heart and increases overall cardiovascular health.
Boysenberries can help increase bone strength
Boysenberries are a good source of vitamin K, which functions in retaining calcium in the bone matrix, decreasing the risk for osteoporosis. Sufficient vitamin K consumption may also reduce urinary excretion of calcium. One cup of boysenberries contains 13 percent of the daily recommended value of vitamin K.
Boysenberries can help you individuals fight infections
Boysenberries are a good source of vitamin C. Vitamin C is a potent natural water-soluble antioxidant that helps the body develop resistance against infectious agents and eliminates cancer-causing free radicals in the body. A study, published in Science, suggested that vitamin C kills mutant colorectal cancer cells.
Boysenberry consumption could be correlated with a decreased risk of epilepsy
One cup of boysenberries contains 36 percent of the mineral manganese. Several studies have suggested that people who have seizures have lower manganese levels in their blood. However, researchers are still investigating whether having seizures causes low levels of manganese or if low manganese levels cause seizures. More clinical studies are still taking place.