Blackberries have been around forever on the west coast but there is an invasive species called Himalayan blackberries that are particularly destructive.  They grow in long sweeping branches covered in thorns and are usually mixed in with another invasive species Broom.

Every spring when I join a volunteer group to clear broom from public areas the dreaded blackberry bushes act as protection for the broom with their thorns.  Miserable plant.

But come mid-summer there is a bounty as the berries come out.  Sweet with a tart taste.  Expensive to buy at the store because they are a bear to pick due to the thorns.

As it happens there is an open area 5 minute walk from our home that has not yet been developed. Rows of broom and Himalayan blackberries.

At this time of year we take Reese for a walk on the trails through this area and we pick a few blackberries.  I have a technique that saves me from scratches.  I have a straightened wire clothes hanger with a hook and instead of reaching into the thorns I pull a branch and harvest the ripe berries.  10 minutes of work and we have enough for a couple of nights of blackberries on ice cream for dessert.  May have another couple of weeks of this bounty before they turn back into the horrid invasive weed.