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EDIBLE WEED WALKS and PLANT CLASSES Message Board › Wild Blackberries...........

Wild Blackberries...........

A former member
Post #: 10
Hi all-
I've discovered lots of wild blackberries on my property. I've never picked them before and it's pretty overgrown where they are. Any tips for a newbie? I've heard stories about snakes and chiggers being in the berry patch. Any advice?


martin h.
Nashville, TN
Post #: 37
For snakes, chiggers, (and ticks), weal thick long pants, boot-type shoes, and tuck your socks over your pants, then take a hot shower when you're done and scrub yourself well....that will definitely keep the snakes off you! :-)

Berries are best when they come off the plant ones that want to stay on the vine need more ripening. Blackberries grow one year, flower the next, then die after they fruit, so if you want to start managing your patch, you could cut and burn the canes that bear fruit this year in a few weeks, after the harvest is over. Another helpful hint, depending on the size and shape of your wild blackberry patch, is to use a swingblade, sythe, brush cutter, or mower to cut paths through or around the patch so it's easier to access in future years.

Blackberries have a number of virus diseases that stunt the canes and berries. If you see anything that doesn't look healthy, it's probably best to cut and burn that, too, but study what you are doing first--there are plenty of well-illustrated guides to caring for wild blackberries.

Hope this helps!
Cindy M.
user 9556327
Group Organizer
Nashville, TN
Post #: 10
I'm augmenting Martin's advice. Take a walking stick or staff to tap the ground in front of you where you can not see the ground due to grass, weeds, or bramble. This will tell snakes to get out of the way.

Having both hands available to pick berries or to remove a briarey branch from your clothing or skin. I like using a cut off plastic mild jug. Leaving the handle completely in tact, cut around the neck of the jug to enlarge it big enough to put your hand in. If you are making jelly or pies, almost black berries are fine to mix in with the very black ones. Black berries do not keep long in the fridge. Mold may grow after two days. Putting 1/4 cup of peroxide in a gallon of water to soak the berries in for 30 minutes when you get back to the house will get the bugs out and get rid of some bacteria and mold, extending the fridge life.

Have fun picking and figuring out how to use your berries!
A former member
Post #: 24
They are all over the place where I live. I'd say about 1-3 weeks to being fully ripe. Can't wait to make some jelly.
Murfreesboro, TN
Post #: 14
My wild blackberry patch is full of fruit waiting to become ripe. It is really early this year. I cover myself well when picking, but I also use a plastic bowl in my left hand, put it into the bushes and lightly take the berries off with my right hand, letting them gently drop into the bowl. It is easier than pulling my hand in and out of the patch....and faster.
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