- The U.S. accounted for 67% of the area planted to blackberries in North America in 2005 with 11,905 acres, the second largest in the world.
- One cup of blackberries has only 62 calories.
- Blackberries are high in vitamin C and fiber, both shown to help reduce the risks of certain cancers.
- The high tannin content and the resultant antiseptic and astringent properties of blackberries makes them good for tightening tissues as well as treating minor bleeding.
- Eating whole berries has been shown in scientific studies to be more beneficial than taking individual phytochemicals in the form of dietary supplements.
- Blackberries contain high levels of anthocyanins, which work as antioxidants to help fight free radical damage in the body and give berries their deep, dark color.
The Blackberry Patch
Juicy treats from thorny canes
- Blackberries are cane berries, which grow on leafy canes that often have thorns.
- Blackberries are often classified according to their cane architecture into three types: erect, semi-erect and trailing.
- Blackberry peak season is June and July with harvesting beginning in May and ending in September and most berries are processed rather than sold in the fresh market.
- Blackberries have a similar appearance to raspberries, but they are larger, hardier and have a dark purple to black color. In general for this berry, the more intense color, the more sweet the fruit.
Growth of a blackberry
- In its first year, a new stem, the primocane, grows vigorously to its full length of 3-6m.
- In its second year, the cane becomes a floricane and the stem does not grow longer, but the lateral buds break to produce flowering laterals. First and second year shoots usually have numerous short curved very sharp prickles that are often called thorns.
- Flowers are produced in late spring and early summer.
- The drupelets only develop around ovules that are fertilized by the male gamete from a pollen grain. The most likely cause of underdeveloped ovules is inadequate pollinator visits.