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Brambling: foraging for fruit

I’ve been hearing for a while about how all the blackberries are out and ripe for the picking, but had been put off because the fields where I know there are usually blackberries still had our cows and bullocks in.

That wouldn’t usually be a problem, but a few years ago I went out with the dog to the same fields, turned my back to reach for the fruits, only to hear a whole load of bullocks coming to nosy at what we were doing.  They’re usually fine, but I couldn’t get the dog to go home and stay out the way, and I didn’t really want cow slobber on my shoulders while I was picking berries, so cut short my trip.  As that same field’s usually got cows in around this time as well as now having N, I’ve never made it back there.  This year I really wanted to take N out so he could experience foraging for wild blackberries.

Last weekend we had beautiful warm weather and we had an hour to spare so we went for a wander down to the yard.  Then N wanted to walk further to the fields.  Some of the cows had been brought in (ready for TB testing), so the 2 fields the footpath goes through were empty and ready and waiting for us.

It always amazes me how far N really can walk.  He’s always happy to be out walking anywhere there’s open spaces, but put him in a town, and he’s permanently asking for his pushchair or wanting to be carried.

wild blackberries
Not quite ripe enough

The blackberries were a bit disappointing.  Not much had ripened, so we’ll have to go back over the next couple of weeks to get them when they’re ripe.  I’d not taken a carton, so we picked a few and made a bag/sling with my cardigan to carry them home.  N definitely liked eating them, although he was a bit short to reach the ones that were a decent size.  Mind you, I was too short to get the really plump ones at the top of the hedges.


Hopefully we’ll be able to go out brambling again to get a decent haul when they’ve ripened a bit more; we’ve none left in the freezer and I like to have some, along with cooking apples from our trees, frozen and ready for making crumble or pies when it’s out of season.

It felt like a long walk back down the fields again, but N walked all the way with no problems.  It was nice to be getting out again for a ‘long’ proper work, and not having to worry about other people being around, pushchairs, or roads.

walk in the fields

Hopefully now he’s a bit bigger and can walk a bit further, we’ll be able to get out in the fields a bit more.

We’ve also been harvesting the apples off the trees in the front garden.  There’s 2 cooking apple trees and one with dessert apples.  Usually we’d grab windfalls, but next door’s dogs have being doing unspeakable things to them, so it’s a case of picking them.  I think there might be quite a few wasted and left for the birds, as unfortunately as we can’treach the top of the trees.  But N is slowly understanding how to twist the apples off to avoid knocking lots of the others off at the same time. There’s a knack to it.

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  1. I have been seeing blackberries in my sleep for the last few weeks. I now know why they are so expensive in the shops. It’s danger money! 🙂 x

    1. ha ha, that made me chuckle. It is madness how expensive they are – I don’t really know if they’re ever farmed for mass market, although I suppose they’d never taste as good.

  2. I wanted to go blackberry foraging with the kids today but discovered there was no place to go near us where we’ve moved to in the US. So had to buy expensive ones to make an apple and blackberry crumble. Very jealous reading you can just get them from your own land!

    1. Boo. Definitely nice having them on our land, although it always looks like there’s more around the roads than in central hedges on the fields unfortunately.

  3. Looks like you had a lovely time. We’ve been to the park and foraged some blackberries today – lots of fun 🙂 #CountryKids

    1. Hoping to get out again tomorrow, although looked today like cows were back in the first field. Will have to check with the OH about bulls and take a stick if we get out again

  4. How great that you have your own land to explore and forage from! N is obviously a little Country Kid and prefers open spaces to crowded towns where he gets bored. Let’s hope your next venture proves more fruitful (it wasn’t a deliberate pun). Thanks for linking up and joining in with Country Kids.

    1. LOL, nice pun! He definitely loves the outdoors although he seems to be coping ok with his new nursery which at the moment doesn’t have its own outdoor space so time outside is limited compared to his day nursery with a forest school.

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