This week, on my daily neighborhood walks with the children and the dog, we encountered lots of edible berries, such as the red huckleberry, thimble berries, some wild raspberries, saskatoon berries, creeping blackberries (my personal favorite) and yesterday we discovered a strange and unfamiliar looking black berry and the vine looked similar to a raspberry vine, but bluish tinted along the prickly stem. I thought to check it out on my I-phone to make sure it was not poisonous, before the children got a chance to taste-test. It was a black raspberry. It tasted lightly sweet, but full flavored, delicious actually, after I had a few. The children did not like it, for it was not sweet enough perhaps. We found it along 56th Ave, near the sidewalk! Thanks to the birds I am sure! After checking this out on the web at home, it appears that this is one of the highest anti- oxidant rich berries in the wild! Have to check the nurseries to get a plant of my own!
The salmonberries are almost done. Look down low for the creeping blackberry, our only native blackberry! They will be red before they turn black and have a full rich flavour!! The red huckleberry is all around Joe Brown Park, Watershed Park etc. great little berry for children to snack on during our walks, we call them “Nature’s candy”! They are tart-sweet. Bring some home and use them in your yoghurt or muffins!!
Then there is the thimble berry, so called because they fit on your thumb, when you pick them! They are very fruity and flavorful, will stain your hands and are very perishable, but so worth it!!! We find lots of it next to Colebrook church and all over Mud Bay dyke and all of our local parks!
Some other berries that are edible but not “incredible” are the Indian plum, mahonia, wild currant and salal berries.
The only berry to watch out for is the Wild Dapne berry, they are black and are found underneath shiny leaves of a short bushy shrub. In large quantities can cause projectile vomiting and neurological damage! Found everywhere in Joe Brown Park!
On your next walk, slow down and look for some berries, get your free vitamin C!!! Don’t forget, want to learn a little more about the plants around us, join us for a free educational nature walks every Friday at 9 am, Check this site to find out where to meet!!