Blackberries, Baby!

We have lived in our house now for 3 1/2 years.  One of the great things we heard from neighbors when we moved in is that the blackberry bush in our back yard would produce the biggest, juiciest blackberries.  I was SO excited!

But we have not been able to take advantage of a blackberry harvest yet.  They had overgrown and needed some tending.  Two years ago, I cut them way back and thought if they didn’t grow we could buy more to plant.

Last year, they grew, but there were only a few berries – and most of them got eaten by birds before we could get to them.

This year.  THIS YEAR I hope to see a change in that!

Blackberry blossoms

I don’t remember seeing so many blossoms in previous years. Whether it was due to needing some pruning or weird weather cycles, I don’t know – but I can’t believe how many blossoms our blackberries have this year already!

And there are SO MANY BLACKBERRIES already growing! I am really excited and HOPE that we can take advantage of these berries this year!

I have HUGE sweet memories of picking blackberries with family friends who lived in Oregon while I was still in high school.  I can still taste the warm blackberry cobbler and vanilla ice cream, after spending some time picking some of the biggest, sweetest blackberries I’d ever seen.  The blackberries in our yard – the few I have been able to enjoy – have been very big, but not as sweet as the ones I remember.  (I do think the flavor memory is definitely enhanced by the company and sweet friendship we shared!)

I have to say, while I am interested in the medicinal properties of blackberries, this year, I am hoping to really reap the benefits of just eating the fruit in a few different ways!!!

As you can see there are blossoms that have yet to bloom, blossoms in mid-bloom and rapidly growing berries. I don’t know the variety of berry, but I do know they produce 2 crops (and can you believe we’ve never really been able to harvest them?) per summer.

My hope is to make a blackberry cobbler for my family to enjoy and maybe WE can make sweet memories together, too!

Do any of you have any berries growing in your area?  Do you like to pick them?  What’s your favorite way to eat your berry harvest?