Blackberrying – on one of those August afternoons when you find the fruit hanging heavily and there’s just a hint of Autumn nipping the air – is there any finer way to spend a jammy hour than picking blackberries?

There’s something hugely satisfyingly democratic about blackberry picking. It’s one of those rare family occasions when everyone can bring their skills to a joint endeavour. From the smallest twins, who’s stature and little hands can grub-out the lower inaccessible spots and so often spy the fruits beneath the leaves that are left unnoticed by adults, to the tallest teenagers nonchalantly stretching out; from the brandishers of sticks to the devil-may-care adventurers braving the thorns, everyone has an opportunity to contribute.

And who can resist sampling just a few of the haul? From wince-inducing sourness to blissful sweetness blackberries tantalise and tempt.

And who isn’t very slightly proud of the fact that you have the most stained fingers at the end of a session when the booty’s bagged and you turn for home?

And who can resist the delicious smells from the kitchen as tart, pie or crumble are made from the fruits of your labour?

And who doesn’t have a clean bowl after the first serving, and eager for seconds with an appetite formed by an afternoon of satisfyingly simple labour together.

Joe studies a blackberry, one to eat or one for the bag??? Questions, questions!
A bush heavy with berries, plump and demanding our attention…
Fin going in low, grandma in charge of the collecting bag…
Autumnal abundance on an August afternoon…
Just look at the little beauties! And the pie more than did justice to them, delicious!

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