There was a raspberry bush in the backyard of the white barn on the other side of Mrs. Johnson’s house when I was wee. I found that raspberry bush when I was about four or five. I started eating the red berries reveling in the sweet tartness. That was the moment raspberries became my favorite fruit. I couldn’t get enough of the red little globes. One day the owner of the bushes reprimanded me for eating the fruit.
“Are those your raspberry bushes” she asked me.
“No” I responded.
“Then you shouldn’t be eating them.”
As the sweet tart juice exploded into my mouth this morning, I was time warped to when I was a child. I remember the curiosity of when I first noticed the small red things in the big green bush, a bush taller than me. I remember pulling a fruit off the vine. I remember eating it. I remember the taste and the texture. I remember how my body forever craved the nutrients of the raspberry. From then on it was raspberry jelly, raspberry pastries, raspberry candies I wanted. I didn’t have access to the berries my body wanted to desperately, but I had access to the artificial raspberry flavored things and I ate them in huge amounts.
Friday when Wolf got home from work we went out for a walk down in Old Hill and found lots and lots and lots and lots and lots and lots and lots of wild raspberry bushes. This morning we went down and picked three quarts.
While down there we also came across some black raspberries. I was super happy to see these because it’s not often you get them. There weren’t that many so Wolf and I didn’t pick too many. I’d say we got about a handful or two. Of course, they are as yummy as the raspberries. A little sweeter I think.
I don’t know why black raspberries don’t grow in the same abundance as red raspberries in these parts.
It’s easy to get confused between a black raspberry and a blackberry. Both grow up toward Sun (raspberries grow down toward Mother Earth) but blackberries tend to be longer and more tubular whereas black raspberries are squatter and more round. Basically, a black raspberry looks like a red raspberry just with blackish fruit instead of red.
Blackberries are abundant around these parts. Wolf and I will be picking them in July and August to squirrel away for winter storage.
There was one last berry we came across but neither of us knew what it is. I popped a couple into my mouth, bit down, made the most sour face, and spit out the berries. Definitely not the kind I want to eat. I’m thinking they’re a “bird berry”, that is a berry only birds like. Can you identify it?
We also came across some blueberries. This was the best part for Wolf as blueberries are his favorite fruit. I think, actually, the only thing better than blueberries in his book is beer and chocolate.