Adventures in Blackberry Abundance

Seems like everything comes at once this time of year. And as much as we ask for abundance, sometimes we forget how much it takes to manage it when it gets here.

A friend of Earthaven has a beautiful blackberry farm near to us in Old Fort. Row after row are elegantly trellised and dripping with fruit. They are such a joy to pick, triggering something in our gatherer-hunter cellular memories, as there is a sort of euphoria and focus that comes. Using that long-embedded know-how, three of us picked 12 gallons of blackberries in little over an hour.

Once at home some were frozen, others eaten fresh but one whole bucket – about 3 gallons were waiting to be “put up.”

Last week, with the help of our experienced intern, Liz Diaz, I heated up the 3 gallons, added lemon juice, and a very small amount of sugar. With Pamona’s Pectin, low sugar jam making is possible. In the canner for 10 minutes and 2 hot and sweaty women later, we have 40 cups of blackberry jam! YEAH.

We’ll no doubt be grateful come winter when we break into those!

About Lee

Lee Warren is a long-time communitarian, homesteader, food activist, writer, and Earthaven member since 2001. She is a founding member of the Village Terraces Cohousing Neighborhood and a manager/owner of Imani Farm, and organic and pastured-based homestead farm. She is co-director and co-founder of School of Integrated Living (SOIL) which offers Farm & Ecovillage Immersions focused on regenerative systems, organic food production, and community living. Equally impassioned about women’s empowerment, conscious relationship, and social justice, Lee is part of a team of women who organize the Southeast Wise Women Herbal Conference each fall.

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