Foraging for Blackberries

By Erin Huffstetler | 06/25/2014 | 2 Comments
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Blackberry season arrived a bit early this year. My husband and I have been out picking every day this week, and there are still tons of berries to pick.

Bucket of Blackberries

I estimate that we’ve picked about five gallons so far.

So what are we doing with all of those berries?

Frozen Blackberries

Some have gone into the freezer, so we can enjoy blackberry cobbler this winter.

Crockpot Blackberry Cobbler

I usually make this crockpot blackberry cobbler

Berry Cobbler in a Jar

but sometimes I make this berry cobbler in a jar instead. It’s great for lunchboxes and parties.

Blackberry Freezer Jam

I also used some of the berries to make blackberry freezer jam. It’s my hands-down favorite jam.

Salad with Blackberry Vinaigrette

Then, I made this tasty salad with blackberry vinaigrette for lunch yesterday.

Blackberry Icebox Cake

And this crazy-good blackberry ice box cake for dessert. Yum!

Find you’re suddenly interested in learning how to forage for blackberries? Here’s what you need to know.

Where to Find Blackberries:

Look for blackberries in unkept areas, like fence rows and along the edge of wooded areas. They prefer full sun, but thrive in partial shade, too. Blackberries have no poisonous look-alikes, so you can pick without fear.

When to Pick:

Here in the South, blackberry season starts around the Fourth of July. It may start at a different time in your area. Ask around, if you aren’t sure when your season starts. Berries are ready for picking when they’re purple all over. Avoid picking any with a pinkish hue – they won’t taste very good.

Go Prepared:

Poison ivy and poison oak favor the same growing conditions as blackberries. Make sure you know what they look like before you head out, so you can avoid them. Consider wearing long sleeves and pants as a further precaution. Wild blackberry brambles have thorns, so you may want to grab a pair of gloves, too. Bring plenty of buckets to carry your spoils, and remember to check for ticks when you get home.

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  1. You have a wonderful site and I look forward to reading it every day!! I like the easy-to-follow, ‘user-friendly,’ practical information you give on how to do so many things which in days past everyone would know how to do, but which isn’t so common knowledge today…such as raising chickens, making jam, patching screens, and just so much more. (And I’m an older person too!) Great work, Erin!

  2. Thanks for your site; i enjoy your blog. Just to say re berry picking.. Be careful of road and fence verges where weeds might have been sprayed and possible contamination of dandelions, berries etc. thanks again and good wishes.

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