Over the last few weeks my family and I have been gathering all the wild blackberries from around the property. These last few years we have let the wild blackberry bushes grow so that we can harvest the fruit during the summer and make jams and relishes. Now that they have started to get invasive, we will be ripping out a majority of them to help protect the natural habitat. Instead, we will be creating a designated area for them to grow, so that we have better control to maintain them.
Now that summer has finished, the blackberries have almost come to the end of their fruiting cycle for the year. We probably won’t get a very good crop when they fruit again in summer later this year. This is mainly because of the removal we will be doing and the time it takes to re-establish the plants. When the construction of the new patch for the blackberries begins I will have an update in a ‘Hanging in the Patch’ post. I have also been wanting to replant some raspberry plants, so I will also be making a patch for them in coming months.
This fruiting season we have harvested up to 60kg in fruit! All the fruit we have collected we have used to make blackberry pies and bottled a few jars to preserve for later in the year. We have also made lots and lots of beautiful homemade jam. I posted back in 2013 (where has the time gone?) the recipe for our homemade jam. If you are interested in making your own homemade blackberry jam of goodness, here is the recipe.
One of the most effective ways to reach those berries in the hard to reach areas is to pull up a truck and stand in the tray.
Otherwise, if you don’t have a truck a ladder will work just as well.
By Bonnie-Marie Hibbs