Wild Black Raspberry Picking from a Thicket
Discovery by Coincidence
My husband was mowing the lawn at his parents farm and as he mowed, he noticed a large group of raspberry plants growing together on top of an old building foundation. There were many plants, and many, many ripe berries.
He spent a couple hours picking what ripe berries he could find, and came home and told me that I could go pick some too, for a pie or some other form of dessert. I went there yesterday, and carefully picked all the black raspberries that I could find and brought them home.
Having black raspberry plants seems so romantic. You have all these plants, and they blossom and each blossom produces a berry and each berry ripens and becomes the black raspberry that you know and love.
However; the black raspberry plant has thorns. There are little thorns along the entire stem of the active cane. There are mother canes that tower above the patch and have extremely large thorns, and if it's windy and they tip over on you and get entangled in your hair, you've got quite a time getting loose. I'm okay, but it was a little painful.
It's tricky picking the berries, but I used the cover of the plastic bowl I was putting them in to move the branches around, and even used them to catch the berries as I picked them. If you wiggle the berries just right, they pop off and fall straight down. If you work it right, you can shove the cover in, pull the canes sideways, and push the cover under what has ripe berries and flick away and then, dump the berries into the bowl. Be careful about the ants, and black beetles and green creatures found on the berries. Get rid of them before you dump your newly picked berries in the bowl.
I can imagine that if you fell down in there, you'd be extremely hurt, or even dead, it's that bad. I told my father in law that I saw three dead bodies of previous pickers in there. He was startled and wondered who they were. I'm sorry. I'm not sarcastic very often, so he thought I was telling the truth. No. I'm a liar.
Picked for Hours
Yes. Even with all my survival techniques, I was still out there for quite some time. Two hours.
My bowl had about seven cups of berries by the time I was finished picking off all the ripe berries.
It was hot, and sunny, but a little windy, and thank goodness for bug spray, since my bug spray was keeping the bugs away. I knew that because I was working on a different project before this one, and the bugs were biting me like I was the last person on earth.
I sprayed with Bug Soothers and put a Bite Me wristband on my arm, and not one bug bothered me while I was picking.