The blackberry is a kind of berry that might have one of the most easily identifiable names. This is because a famous brand of smartphone is named after it. Like its phone namesake, and as its name suggests, the blackberry is black or deep purple in color and belongs to the family of plants that the raspberry and strawberry belong to, the Rosaceae family. There are more than 375 species of blackberries growing in various temperate regions around the world.
Although many people like eating fresh blackberries, they can also be delicious when made into jams and jellies or baked into pies, cobblers, muffins and cakes. Here are more facts about the blackberry that you might like to know.
- Blackberries are also known as brambleberries because it grows from a bramble, a shrub that has thorny stems.
- Bees that feed on blackberry blossoms produce a dark-colored, fruit-flavored honey.
- Harvest time for blackberries run between the months of June to August, although there are varieties that produce fruit until September.
- Blackberries should be mature when harvested since they cease to ripen once they are picked. Ripe blackberries get moldy easily when left at room temperature. Even when refrigerated, the fruits can only last for a couple of days. Frozen blackberries, however, can last for months.
- A tea made from blackberry leaves is used in alternative medicine as a remedy for diarrhea. In fact, temporary ceasefires were declared during the U.S Civil War whenever there were dysentery outbreaks, to give the soldiers time to look for blackberry shrubs.
- Like other berries, the blackberry can boast of its nutritional content and health-giving properties. It contains fiber, Vitamins C, E and K, as well as manganese. It is also rich in anthocyanins, antioxidants that give the blackberry its dark color. Antioxidants are compounds that are effective against age-related diseases and cancer.
- Blackberries can help you look and feel young. Regular consumption of the fruit promotes brain function and maintains good memory, as well as tightens tissues and skin.
- The juice extracted from blackberries can be used to make an indigo-colored dye. Because the juice is also anti-inflammatory, it is a recommended drink for those suffering from inflamed joints. The juice is likewise highly nutritious, as one cup already provides more than 100% of the recommended daily intake of Vitamin C.
- A cup of fresh blackberries, which constitutes a single serving, has 62 calories.
- There are more than 10 blackberry festivals in the United States, held during the harvest months of June to August, when blackberries are at their freshest and most abundant.