Thursday, July 8, 2010

Rasperries and Black Rasperries

The berries are here! The ultimate in foraging yumminess. Baby Yub Yub has an uncanny ability to spot berries. Perhaps it is her height and, therefore, her unique viewpoint. She combs the yard looking for these delights. "More, Mama, more!"

It is a superb berry year. We have had lots of hot, sunny weather and little rain. We always find wild red raspberries, and the perimeter of our yard is flush with wild blackberries (not yet ripe), but we often have to search out the black rasperries. Not this year!

I am teaching summer school right now, and each day at recess, my first and second graders scan the black raspberry plants around the playground looking for the berries that have ripened overnight or the few they missed the day before. To them foraging is just as fun, if not more, than playing on the playground equipment. They love the hunt and the reward at the end. Some of them eat each berry as they find it. Others hoard them up in their sweaty hands until they have enough to toss a handful into their mouths, the sweet berries exploding all at once in their mouths.

I make tons of jam. I love to go to our local orchard, pick ripe berries, come home, and can away. Every year, I plan to collect wild berries and make wild jam, but it is simply too much fun to eat them as we play outside. Enjoy!

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