How to Pick Wild Blackberries

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Wild blackberries are a delicious fruit that can be eaten as they are, added to cereal or salads, or used in desserts and baking. Part of the fun of eating wild blackberries is getting to pick the wild blackberries yourself. Wild blackberries grow along roadsides and in fields and pastures in warm climates, and they are usually ripe for picking from May to early June.

Things You'll Need

  • Boots Pants Gloves Plastic containers

How to Pick Wild Blackberries: Before Picking

  • Check the wild blackberry vines in the time leading up to harvest. Wild blackberries may ripen at different times depending on rainfall and spring temperatures, so keep an eye on the plants so you'll know when the berries begin to ripen.

  • Once the wild blackberries have turned black in color and appear plump and shiny, they are ready for picking and should be harvested quickly to avoid rotting or being eaten by wildlife.

  • On the day you plan to pick wild blackberries, dress in long pants and boots or sturdy shoes.

  • Bring gloves if you don't want to get your fingers scratched, as blackberry vines have many small thorns.

  • Pack several hard plastic containers to place the picked blackberries in. Do not bring plastic bags, as the wild blackberries are somewhat fragile and will get bruised and crushed in bags.

How to Pick Wild Blackberries: Getting the Best Berries

  • When picking wild blackberries you may be tempted to pick any that are black in color, but not all black blackberries are ripe for picking. Only pick the wild blackberries that are plump and shiny. Avoid blackberries that appear dull in color or shriveled, as these will not have the desired taste.

  • Gently pull the wild blackberries off the vine and place them in the plastic containers. If it is difficult to pick the wild blackberry off the vine, it is probably not fully ripe and should be left on the vine to ripen.

  • Once you have picked your first batch of wild blackberries, you should wait 3 days in between picking sessions to maximize the sugar content of the berries.

  • Store wild blackberries in the refrigerator unless you intend to eat them right away.

  • Rinse all wild blackberries before eating.

Tips & Warnings

  • Blackberries can be stored in the refrigerator for a few days. Wild blackberries intended for use in desserts can be frozen, but their consistency and texture will be greatly affected, so freezing is not recommended for regular consumption.
  • Be cautious when picking wild blackberries. Snakes and other wildlife can be found in and around wild blackberry vines, especially in the spring and early summer.

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