Allegheny Blackberry, American Blackberry, Bly, Bramble,
Bramble-Kite, Brambleberry, Brameberry, Brummel
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Blackberry Herbal Use and Medicinal Properties
edible and medicinal. Used extensively by the Native American
tribes, it had many other surprising uses. The leaf is more commonly
used as a medicinal herb, but the root also has medicinal value. Young edible shoots are harvested in the spring, peeled and used in
salads. Delicious Blackberries are edible raw or made into jelly or
jam. The root-bark and the leaves are astringent, depurative,
diuretic, tonic and vulnerary. They make an
excellent alternative medicine
for dysentery, diarrhea, hemorrhoids, and cystitis.
most astringent part is the root. Orally, they are used to treat sore
throats, mouth ulcers and gum inflammations. A decoction of the
leaves is useful as a gargle in treating thrush and also makes a
good general mouthwash. The presence of large amounts of tannins
that give blackberry roots and leaves an astringent effect useful
for treating diarrhea are also helpful for
soothing sore throats. A medicinal syrup is also made from Blackberry, using the
fruit and root bark in honey for a cough remedy.
Blackberry Habitat and Description
Blackberry is a thorny shrub or vine, perennial, native to Eastern
N. America from Nova Scotia to Ontario, New York, Virginia and North
Carolina south. It is found in dry thickets, clearings and woodland
margins, fence rows, open meadows, roadsides in and waste places.
When the Blackberry flowers bloom in the wild it is a beautiful
sight; hillsides and fields are covered with white flowers. The
flowers are white, with five petals, and bloom in April and May.
Blackberry plants have biennial stems; they produce a number of new
stems from the perennial rootstock each year, these stems fruit in
their second year and then die. The vines are long and very thorny,
growing in groups or thickets. Blackberry vines branch and can grow
up to 15 feet or more in length, and thickets can extend to hundreds
of square acres in an area. They die off after 2 to 3 years but are
usually retained in the thickets making them largely impenetrable.
Blackberry Leaves are light green, serrate and palmate with 3 to
five leaflets or fingers, the main vein on the back of each leaflet
How to Grow Blackberries
is easily grown in a good well-drained loamy soil in sun or
Click here for detailed growing info.
Plants - Simmons Plant
Farm - All kinds of Berries
History and Folklore
Blackberries were in olden days supposed to give
protection against all 'evil runes,' if gathered at the right time
of the moon. Since ancient Greek physicians prescribed the herb for
gout, the leaves, roots, and even berries have been employed as a
medicinal herb. The most common uses were for treating diarrhea,
sore throats, and wounds. Native Americans made fiber, obtained from
the stem, it was used to make a strong twine. Another use was as a
huge barricade around the village made of piles of the thorny canes,
for protection from 4 and 2 legged predators. A purple to dull blue
dye is obtained from the fruit.
Fruit is usually ripe in late June through July. Gather edible fruit
when ripe, can be frozen or canned for later use. Gather leaves and
roots of young (first year) cane, dry for later herbal use.
Blackberry Recipe Ideas
tea: To 1 ounce of the dried leaves and root bark, add 1 pint of
boiling water, and steep 10 min., drink a tea cup at a time. Use to
make jellies, jams, cobblers, and in any recipe where you would use
More Blackberry recipes
How to make Blackberry Wine
Article by Deb Jackson & Karen Bergeron
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