Our countryside is covered with wild blackberry bushes. Actually they are Himalayan Berries and extremely invasive - but oh so delicious. They are native only to Armenia and Northern Iran - but to the rest of the world they are considered to be a noxious weed and highly invasive. They can grow up to 40 feet in one year and in our area will take over any place or any building left along for the shortest time.
In 1885, Luther Burbank - a famous California botanist brought the Himalayan Blackberry to the U.S. as a backyard plant. Luther loved the vigorous growth and extra large, delicious fruit. Everyone else loved it and no one complained. But birds and animals began spreading the seeds and now it a out of control. At first it was so popular that people couldn't get enough vines - be careful what you wish for.
They take over any vacant field
They are next to almost every road
Luther Burbank brought us many wonderful plants - such as Elephant Garlic, Shasta Daisy and Burbank potatoes - but the Himalayan Blackberry - while fabulous for jams, jellies and pies - not to mention just dropping the berries on ice cream - it is completely out of control.
But their fruit is delicious - and hard to get at - since the vines have very big thorns, and lots of them. They also put out long protective vines - which can reach 10 feet in length and have to be cut away to get at the berries.
They usually ripen in August and September and if the rains hold off the September berries are always the sweetest. But even one good rainstorm ruins the berries - they get moldy and soft - so we always hope for good weather in the blackberry season
Blossom and newly forming blackberry - I can't wait. They seem to be early this year - maybe will even ripen in July. Get out your berry buckets!!!