My grandma tells stories of berry picking as a child and how they would bundle up (no, not because you pick berries in the cold) in the wicked summer heat to avoid those vicious thorns. Here is an excerpt from one of grandma's stories:
We always looked forward to berry picking time. The raspberries ripen first. There were never as many raspberries as there were blackberries. These berries grew wild in our woods. Mother made jam from the berries. We liked jelly better but mother said it took more berries for the jelly then the jam. When we were younger, mother always went berry picking with us. We would dress in long pants, long sleeved shirts and then put a piar of long socks on our arms to protect ourselves from the berry bushes. We cut out places for our fingers i the bottom of the socks. Mother would go ahead into the thick bushes and make a path. She would pick the berries that were high and we picked the lower berries. If it was a good year for berries, we sometimes had extra to sell.
I was thinking about this story just the other day when I had my 8 year old and 10 year old out picking berries with me. We took the 4-wheeler and I went ahead in the high grass and bushes to cut a path behind for the kids to follow. We were all dressed in our carhartt bib overalls, boots and long sleeves (what a sight!) If you like blackberries and have never picked wild ones, you should, just to better appreciate the effort that goes in to just 1 quart of berries! I love some of these connections I share with my grandmother, and my mother who also tells stories of berry picking when she was young. Though in my youth I was raised in the city and did not become a farm girl until just a year ago...(read story here), I think it has always been in my blood.