Blackberries are very popular not just because they are delicious but because they are beneficial, and it is these two reasons that prompted ancient people to use blackberries, understand their very nature, and harness their potential as food and medicine, resulting in the creation of different things made from blackberries, including blackberry syrup.
Blackberry Syrup Trivia
- A blackberry plant is very beneficial because you can make medicine from its different parts (leaves, roots, and fruits).
- Here’s an interesting story about blackberries: this fruit, according to Greek mythology, was bred from Titans’ blood!
- Blackberry syrup is a great remedy for many problems, from sore throat to intestinal parasites!
Blackberry Syrup Buying Guide
You can buy blackberry syrup at the grocery or supermarket. Local, homemade, artisanal blackberry syrup is sold in local stores and farmers markets.
When buying a bottle of blackberry syrup, always make sure to check if the seal is intact. Make sure to also check the item for any signs of tampering or damage that could have compromised the quality of the syrup.
Blackberry Syrup Production & Farming in Texas
Blackberry syrup is made from harvested blackberries. Blackberries are well adapted to Texas. Many farms and ranches in Texas grow blackberries, and the fruits harvested in these farms and ranches are either eaten fresh or processed to produce other food items like blackberry syrup. Are there enough blackberries to make blackberry syrup? There should be, since blackberry plants can produce anywhere from 5,000 to 10,000 pounds of blackberry fruits per acre per year, with harvests beginning as early as May or June. And if blackberry plants are well managed and well taken care of, they can bear fruit for as long as 15 years, although blackberry growers know that the best years of blackberry plants when it comes to producing fruits is from year 3 to year 8.
Blackberry syrup made from Texas comes from different varieties of blackberries. There are specific blackberry varieties that are suitable in specific areas in Texas.
- Brazos is a blackberry variety developed by Texas A&M. Brazos bear large blackberry fruits and these plants are known as heavy producers. Expect Brazos blackberries in Texas ripe by mid-May and ready to be harvested and used to make blackberry syrup. One of the reasons why blackberry growers choose Brazos is the ability of this variety to have good disease tolerance. Growers know that this variety is best used for cooking, canning, and making blackberry syrup, and not for eating freshly-picked.
- Rosborough is from Texas A&M. This is a firm and sweet blackberry that is great to grow in east Texas and south-central Texas, but not in northwest Texas because this will not thrive where there is low winter temperature.
- Womack is from Texas A&M. This is recommended for west-central and north Texas, but not recommended for southeast or northwest Texas.
- Cheyenne produces very large sweet blackberries that taste like raspberry. Not only that, but this plant is also resistant to orange rust and tolerant to several diseases. Expect the fruits to be ripe by June for growers in east Texas.
- Choctaw bears soft, medium-sized fruit. This is a great choice for growers located in Panhandle. Brison is from Texas A&M. This is described as a very early ripening blackberry, recommended for growing in the clay soils of south-central Texas and far north Texas. However, Brison is not recommended for southeast Texas because of its susceptibility to fungal diseases.
- Kiowa is recommended for east, north, and central Texas. This is not recommended for northwest Texas.
- Apache blackberries ripen around early July in central Texas. This is also recommended for northeast Texas.
- Arapaho blackberries ripen in late May to early June in central Texas. This sweet variety is considered one of the best-tasting blackberries today. Another advantage of growing this variety is never having to worry about double blossom and rust.
- Navaho is a medium-sized fruit with high sugar content. This is recommended for north and northwest Texas.
- Ouachita blackberries begin to ripen around June. This is a great choice for growers in central and southeast Texas.
- Natchez produces large, firm blackberries. This variety is very productive, with a high yield that is twice as much as Arapaho’s yield. If you want to make many bottles of blackberry syrup, this variety is a good choice. Natchez ripens by June. It has good disease tolerance capabilities.
Pesticides, Additives, and Chemicals:
Here are some chemicals found in blackberry syrup:
- Natural Flavors
- Citric Acid
- Caramel Color
- Sodium Benzoate
- FD&C Red #40
Wild blackberries and domesticated blackberries originate from two places – Asia minor for wild blackberries and Europe for domesticated blackberries.
Mexico is a major exporter of blackberries and the US imports blackberries from Mexico. Blackberries are also cultivated in Europe, Russia, and the US. In the US, the state of Oregon is the leading producer of blackberries.
Blackberry syrup is sold in a plastic or glass jar. An important part of the packaging is the label, which contains all the important information the consumer needs to know – the name of the company or the manufacturer, best before date, nutritional data, storage instructions, the place where it was made and bottled, bar code, etc. When buying, it is important that the packaging shows no sign of damage or tampering to ensure the quality and safety of the product.
Enjoying Blackberry Syrup
You can use blackberry syrup on pancakes, ice cream, cake, pastries, and baked goods, or use it to sweeten and add flavor to cocktails, coffees, and other beverages.
Blackberry syrup contains 80 calories per serving coming from carbohydrates, and some brands contain sodium and sugar. Blackberries contain vitamins A, B, C, E, and K. It also contains calcium, potassium, magnesium, and antioxidants. Blackberries help improve brain health. It also helps treat stomach problems. Eating blackberries also allows the body to absorb fiber.
One benefit blackberry syrup offers is helping cure colds the natural way, without the use of any modern medicine, without taking any medication. Blackberry syrup is made from fruit which can treat diarrhea. It can also help in managing gout, diabetes, pain and swelling, even cancer and heart disease.
Store-bought blackberry syrup should be refrigerated after opening.
Make your own blackberry syrup
If you have lots of blackberries and you are wondering what is the best way to preserve these for use later, then why not make your own blackberry syrup? You’ll have a homemade and healthy blackberry syrup without the chemicals and preservatives normally found in store-bought blackberry syrup.
Yield: This recipe makes 1 (one) 350 ml bottle of blackberry syrup
- 500ml of blackberries
- Fresh juice of ½ lemon
- 1 cup sugar
- 1 cup water
Step 1. Mix sugar, lemon juice, and blackberry in a saucepan over medium heat.
Step 2. Once the blackberries begin to disintegrate and turn into mush, mash it using a fork to extract as much juice as possible.
Step 3. Add water.
Step 4. Simmer for ten minutes.
Step 5. Let it cool.
Step 6. Strain to remove the solid parts.
Step 7. Store in a clean bottle or jar with a cap or lid.