Blackberry picking in September

Friday, September 22, 2017

Everyone must have gone blackberry picking at some point in their life. The easiest of all foraging perhaps, for the brambles lean out into your path, attempting to snag your coat as you pass. They're unmistakable and easy to assess when they're ripe. It's a doddle. Just remember a little pot to put them in. I suppose they're best off rinsed gently but we've all eaten a few on location and lived to tell the tale. Neatly ticking this off my Autumn wishlist, C and I walked down the lanes on Saturday afternoon to collect our bounty. It was immediately apparent that we weren't the first to go picking on that spot, though there were still a fair few left. The stocks hadn't been plundered, more skimmed of the big juicy ones. (Darn, those are the ones I go for).
I maintained that we should have born the weirdness of it and brought a tall pair of steps to reach the tasty looking ones that dangling far above an arm's stretch. Of course it does help if you have someone taller to come along with you. I really ought to make a tall friend for foraging walks.

It was a blackberry and apple crumble I had in mind (just for me) so we weren't seeking out thousands, just a few handfuls. Plenty here.
The hedgerows really are brimming with autumn offerings at the moment. Berries, hips, more berries...

This little birdie didn't think I could see it. Wrong. Say cheese.

Rowan? I think so.
It always pays to double, triple check any berries before picking. Many are inedible and toxic.

The elder is a curious plant (is it a tree? or shrub? or bush?) The elderflowers make liquor with the most heavenly sweetness yet the berries are 'orrid when used in vodka in my book. Like sour blackcurrant with not a vague semblance to their foreflowers*
The skies looked doubtful down the road and we did get a light sprinkling whilst out but this rainbow was a lovely sight (and hurrah for having my camera out with us!)

Above, honesty seed pods. I'm looking forward to mine flowering and going to seed next year. The pods are a classic old school decoration but that's fine by me.
Below: Hawthorne (berries are not to be eaten)

Above and below unsure. But pretty.

Crab apples in abundance at the moment. I'd love to put some to good use. I'm sure there must be some purpose they're good for.
A neat outcrop of honeysuckle.

*foreflowers might not be a word but if it isn't then it should.
The sloes will be next, for gin. We made rosehip syrup a couple of weeks ago. It's turned out ok.
Take care, take a little container for whatever goodies you may find.

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