The Blackberries are Coming!

by Cynthia

We have a blackberry bush in our backyard that we have managed to keep under control and it is really putting on some berries this year. It won’t be much longer and they will be ready to pick. I can’t wait for that! Last summer my boys would go out every morning and pick the berries that were ripe. One morning we were able to pick enough to make a large batch of jam. I don’t even worry about the birds eating the fruit. Our blackberry is so productive that there are plenty enough berries for us and the birds. And the birds do love our blackberry patch. They love to use it for shelter as well as a food source. Plus it is in a perfect location in the back part of the yard.

Upon close inspection of the blackberry I can really see how they are related to the rose family. Of course there are the thorny branches but then there are also the flowers of the blackberries. They so very much make me think of the flower of a rose. The blackberry flowers are actually quite pretty. Some will bloom pink while others will be white like the picture in the sidebar which was taken of our blackberry a few weeks ago.

It is amazing how prolific the blackberries are up here in the Pacific Northwest. Our blackberry patch is wild and we have to keep it under check or it will begin to encroach on the rest of the yard. Once a year we remove any runners that appear where we do not want them to be and this helps keep the blackberry under control. We also remove any dead canes as the blackberry will just grow over them creating this huge thorny fortress. On top of that we are mindful of any arching branches that eventually touch the ground as these too will root and start yet another plant.

The blackberries are everywhere out here. Sides of roads are blanketed in a thick tangled mess of them. I had never seen anything like it before moving up here. I knew blackberries were very prolific out here but I never could have imagined that they would be this prolific! It makes me think of Sleeping Beauty when the prince had to hack his way through all the thorny branches in order to reach the castle.

Despite having to really keep an eye on it I completely love having it in our yard. There is nothing better than eating a just picked, perfectly ripe blackberry that has been warmed by the summer sun.

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