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Blackberry-picking tips

A close-up photo of ripening red and black blackberries at Trelissick, Cornwall
Find the best berries to eat on the spot or take home | © National Trust Images/Hilary Daniel

Heading out in the hopes of picking blackberries for a crumble or to eat with some fresh cream? Here are our top tips for foraging for these delicious berries.

Top tips for picking blackberries

When to pick blackberries?

August, September and early October are the best months to pick these juicy fruits from hedgerows.

Look high and low
When you find a likely-looking spot covered in berries, try not to completely clear the area.
Try not to eat them until they're washed
This is a tricky tip to follow as they're very tempting to snack on as you forage.
Take care
Wear long sleeves and trousers and take care when moving through hedgerows; you might get caught in the bushes or meet a few stinging nettles!
Pick firm, plump-looking berries
The squashed ones will spoil quicker.
Eat or freeze your berries within 24 hours
And don't wash them until you're ready to freeze or eat them, otherwise they'll spoil.

Don’t completely clear an area of food, leave some for the animals and give a chance for the plants to re-seed.

A quote by Jonny TomlinsonNational Trust Ranger

How to clean berry stains from your clothes

If you end up with purple stains on your clothes, cover the stains in white vinegar, leave for 30 minutes, rinse with cold water and wash as normal.

A close-up photo of ripening red and black blackberries at Trelissick, Cornwall

Best places to pick blackberries

See the best places in our care to pick these juicy berries.

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