Fun & Easy Science for Kids
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Blackberry

 

Blackberries are related to raspberries. How can you tell the difference? Blackberries are black, not red, when they’re ripe. Also, if you look at the top of a raspberry, you’ll notice a hole where the torus – the small, white core that attaches to the stem – was. Blackberries don’t have this hollow core. The torus stays in the fruit.

 

Fun Facts

  • Blackberries have one of the highest levels of antioxidants of any food. These antioxidants can reduce the risk of some types of cancer and even keep the brain healthy. Blackberry leaves are sometimes made into a tea which is used by women to reduce labor pains.
  • Blackberries can be eaten raw, dried, or cooked in jams, pies, and muffins.
  • Blackberries grow wild in the Pacific Northwest where they’re often considered weeds. Some types have thorns.
  • Most of the blackberries grown for commercial use in the U.S. come from Oregon. Mexico is the world’s largest blackberry grower.
  • Blackberries turn from green to red to black when they’re fully ripe.
  • Some blackberries grow on long, trailing vines. Others grow on upright stems.
  • In England, there’s an old folk tale that blackberries shouldn’t be picked after Michaelmas Day in October. The story says that the devil has spit on or stepped on them and they’re not good to eat after this day. Wet fall weather does encourage mold growth so the blackberries don’t taste as good and might even be toxic.

 

Vocabulary

  1. Torus: the small white core that attaches the fruit to the stem
  2. Commercial use: meant to be sold to the public
  3. Upright: standing straight up

 

Questions and Answers

Question: Can I grow blackberries at home?

Answer: Blackberries are easy to grow. Choose a thornless variety that grows well in your area. Plant it in rich soil in full sun.

 

Learn More

Learn how to grow blackberries.

  1. Allen Smith tells you how to harvest blackberries.
 

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