Appalachia Appalachia Through My Eyes

Appalachia Through My Eyes – Blackberry Blooms

Appalachia Through My Eyes - Blackberry Winter

Every year when the Blackberries bloom there’s a cold snap of weather-I mean you can mark my word-there is always a cold spell that coincides with the white showy blooms of the Blackberry.

I wondered if this year’s unusually warm Spring would alter that cold snap-Appalachians call it Blackberry Winter.

Turns out the too warm winter and spring couldn’t fool Blackberry Winter. The white blooms have been dotting the hills and roads around Brasstown for a week and this morning its a chilly 38 degrees at my house with a brisk wind.

Cold at your place? I hear a few of you may even get snow today.


Appalachia Through My Eyes – A series of photographs from my life in Southern Appalachia.


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  • Reply
    April 27, 2012 at 10:26 am

    They are out here and we dodged the snow last weekend thankfully!

  • Reply
    April 25, 2012 at 12:34 am

    Yep, Raleigh got 37 degrees last night. We’ll probably have a few plants to cut back to see if they start again too. Course we never plant the garden itself until after May 1st, and since last year, after the farmer behind us plows or plants his field because last year instead of plowing, he sprayed with a RoundUp type product which the wind brought onto our property and killed our whole garden and our neighbor’s too. Grrr…but when you live in big farm country, what are you to do? The big farms rule over the home gardens – at least in our county they seem to.
    God bless.

  • Reply
    kathryn Magendie
    April 24, 2012 at 3:00 pm

    Tipper – I put up the recipes that are in the back of Family Graces on my website – so “Pap” is mentioned as is granny 😀

  • Reply
    Wayne Newton
    April 24, 2012 at 1:13 pm

    Though my long, long, long habitation in the Wiregrass country of deep South Georgia came to an end in 2007, the deeply ingrained memories and expectations of seasonal changes, I find, is yet a very strong and predominant influence on my anticipations as the months roll by here in Union County Georgia. (WOW, thought I would never come to the end of that thought!!)
    And just when I believed I was coming to understand life here at 2200 ft, where I watch Peter Young every day, Almighty God throws a spell of weather like the past six months.
    He must be saying, “GOTCHA” to all of us who think we are so smart.
    The names, the explanations, Wive’s tales, Mule tales, Wiry worms, and such, are proof that we mere mortals believe we must explain and understand the unexplainable and the incomprehensible power of God.
    All of the records and similitudes from eons past serve to guide us to the conclusion; “God is Great; He is Omnipotent, Omniscient”.
    All that was stated just to remind myself how small and insignificant we mortals are, and how blessed we are to enjoy the paradise of these majestic mountains.

  • Reply
    David Templeton
    April 23, 2012 at 9:19 pm

    Could be that God reconsidered and started out one day to give all of His children on Earth all the blessings of Heaven. Of course, He would have known that, having been given Paradise all around, people, being human, would just lay down and not try to be good enough for Heaven, so maybe God thought, “Well, won’t be good for them or me in the long run”. “But still …, He might have lovingly thought, “but still … they ought to have just a little bit of Heaven; you know … to make them want to get up here for all these other delights”. So He made the blackberry, and to some, like Tipper, He even ‘lowed the recipe to get out for that cobbler she makes.

  • Reply
    Aunt Ruth
    April 23, 2012 at 8:22 pm

    Cold and very windy today in Cleveland. One of my screens blew halfway across the yard. Got a warning about possible snow tonight and tomorrow. Wore the winter jacket and earmuffs this morning and hope it’s the last time! The Virginia bluebells are in full bloom in our Metropark – one of the things we look forward to each year.

  • Reply
    Uncle Al
    April 23, 2012 at 8:22 pm

    37 this morning a few miles west of Franklin. Suppose to be 31 tonight with some frost. I sure I hope I don’t loose my blackberries again (and grapes). 🙂 Definitely a Blackberry Winter!

  • Reply
    Janet Smart
    April 23, 2012 at 7:28 pm

    Mine aren’t blooming yet, but it won’t be long. I hope they delay a little, it is too early for this area and I would hate for them to get bit by a freeze. It is quite chilly here, too.

  • Reply
    April 23, 2012 at 6:59 pm

    This morning when I poked my head
    out the door, the wind ’bout took
    it away from me. And it was snowin’ too. At first I thought it
    was just white blossoms blowing in
    the wind. Maybe it won’t frost this time, especially if it stays
    windy. Gotta chunk up the fire…

  • Reply
    Sherie Rowe
    April 23, 2012 at 5:13 pm

    I love Blackberry Winter! I love seeing the white blossoms promising yumminess even with snowflakes flitting around them!

  • Reply
    April 23, 2012 at 4:59 pm

    Well you can’t always fool Mother Nature, I guess!
    We may get snow this afternoon/evening, right now it’s just the incredible wind gusts to contend with.

  • Reply
    dolores barton
    April 23, 2012 at 3:57 pm

    Yes, here in Caldwell County Foothills, the thermometer read 37 this morning when my eyes opened to the day. It was a bit chilly, but when the sun came up, it was a nice chilly for me.

  • Reply
    April 23, 2012 at 12:12 pm

    Blackberries are blooming all over the place here, too.
    Don’t know what the temp was this morning, but I needed a jacket to go outside.

  • Reply
    Ethelene Dyer Jones
    April 23, 2012 at 12:00 pm

    Here in Middle Georgia I don’t usually see blackberry blossoms anymore as I did all those years in N. GA, for none grow wild near enough for me to find a patch! But we’re definitely in “Blackberry Winter” even here, with a cool a. m. of 48 degrees and winds gusting to as much as 30mph. I had to turn the heat on–again!

  • Reply
    susie swanson
    April 23, 2012 at 11:40 am

    I’m afraid they’ll be a lot more stuff get bit tonight.. it seems we are having all kinds of winters here lately..Week before last must have been the Dogwood and Easter winter..hope they’ll soon be over.

  • Reply
    April 23, 2012 at 11:35 am

    Definitely Blackberry Winter here. Cold with spurts of light snow. No accumulation. Oh, how I hated turning on the heat again.

  • Reply
    April 23, 2012 at 10:27 am

    It was about 38* here this morning, and yes, the blackberries are blooming. We call it Blackberry Winter. A little fire in the furnace feels good to take the chill out of the house too.

  • Reply
    Mary Shipman
    April 23, 2012 at 10:15 am

    We had “blackberry winter” about a week ago. There is frost in the valleys and hollers this morning.
    I went out with Hubby to enjoy the sunrise while he turkey hunted on a different ridge. It was coverall weather! We did find some asparagus while we were out.
    There are some pics of the frost and the asparagus on my blog today.

  • Reply
    John Reese
    April 23, 2012 at 10:12 am

    38 here in Irondale. Wet and cold. got the wood stove burning.calling for snow flurries ,none yet.

  • Reply
    April 23, 2012 at 10:06 am

    Imagine my surprise when I looked out the window into Wild and Wonderful WV and saw those snowflakes. Oh well, they were puny, and you can’t mess up a good Spring. Blackberry Winter, and then we have those cold Sheep rains or cold May rains in May. When you know all the rules these cold spells don’t catch you by surprise. I love this time of year!

  • Reply
    April 23, 2012 at 9:45 am

    Ditto here! I saw our berries blooming yesterday as I took my garden walk. We’ve had frost 2 or 3 times in the past week. But I see no snow in the forecast, thank goodness.

  • Reply
    April 23, 2012 at 9:44 am

    It’s cold today here in KY! Makes me glad I haven’t planted my garden. I don’t think our blackberries are bloomed yet. It can’t be dogwood winter as they quit blooming a few weeks ago… Not sure what to call this confusing weather except just plum crazy.

  • Reply
    Kimberly Burnette
    April 23, 2012 at 9:32 am

    I was just driving down the road yesterday and noticed the blackberry blossoms. As I was watching the dark clouds roll in, the rain, and the wind picking up, I thought to myself “blackberry winter”

  • Reply
    Carol Isler
    April 23, 2012 at 9:26 am

    Yup, chilly down here in Greer. Yesterday when the thunder rolled and the winds picked my honeybees were scrambling from the blackberry blossons to the hive entrance. I told Ken then,”Here comes Blackberry Winter.” The girls are still hunkered down in the hive this morning. I’m sure they are really bummed. -Carol

  • Reply
    April 23, 2012 at 9:19 am

    SE Texas is cool for what we consider normal…But I doubt you would find it so. It’s 63 and headed towards 80 today. But the windows are open and the morning breeze is bringing in the sound of birdsong.
    I have been picking dewberries (our version of blackberries) on walks for a couple of weeks around here along with mulberries for variety. It’s my time of year here.

  • Reply
    April 23, 2012 at 9:17 am

    It’s chilly and RAINY 🙂 🙂 here today, as it’s been all weekend. I don’t know if the blackberries are blooming here yet…I’ll have to go look at my neighbors’ back yard!

  • Reply
    April 23, 2012 at 9:11 am

    Yes indeed the weather has changed yet again and it is quite chilly up here in Pa. and very damp—but the rain did turn all a wonderful shade of green—I guess one needs to always look for a blessing in whatever comes their way.

  • Reply
    April 23, 2012 at 8:43 am

    It was a chilly 36 degrees here this morning… brrrr… I wasn’t sure till I saw your picture but my back lot is evidently covered with blackberries!!!! Now I have to keep watch so the critters won’t get them all!!

  • Reply
    April 23, 2012 at 8:42 am

    We were in the 50’s with rain last weekend..the past three days have been in the 90’s! Cold and rain next weekend…this is insanity!

  • Reply
    Miss Cindy
    April 23, 2012 at 8:36 am

    Snow, I certainly hope not!
    Those precious blooms surely promise summer. It will be interesting to see what kind of summer we have following the mild winter. I hear we can expect fleas, ticks and all manner of bugs and other creepy crawly critters.
    Looking at those blooms I can taste your divine blackberry jelly. Yours is the best ever!

  • Reply
    kathryn Magendie
    April 23, 2012 at 8:31 am

    We were glad to wake up to see no snow had come! It’s chilly, but that’ll soon pass later this week. It’s been a warm winter and these little cold snaps aren’t too bad- as long as they don’t kill all the new growth -I hate when that happens -lawd!

  • Reply
    B. Ruth
    April 23, 2012 at 8:26 am

    and just what kind of blackberry do you get from that Sweet Shrub bloom?…LOL….also would’nt it be wonderful if the weather stays just so that the blackberries would’nt dry up like last year…I would love to have a gallon or two or three of big old blackberries..the kind I remember gettin’ into when I was a kid a pickin’…yummmm
    Jam, jelly, cobbler and pie..syrup and wine wouldn’t that be fine!..Oh I forgot we don’t make blackberry wine…got carried away for a second..
    Great Post Tipper….Does anyone pick the hops from the wild white rose bushes that are blooming along the fence rows…I’d say you would have to fight off the mockingbirds and catbirds in the bush…LOL

  • Reply
    Tim Cuthbertson
    April 23, 2012 at 8:09 am

    Yes, Tipper, it is very chilly here in central Alabama with plenty of blackberry flowers, too.

  • Reply
    Mike McLain
    April 23, 2012 at 8:05 am

    Blackberries are my favorite fruit. I look forward to moving back to the mountains and trying to get the blackberries before the bears or mockingbirds get them!

  • Reply
    Pat in east TN
    April 23, 2012 at 8:03 am

    36 here this morning and a FREEZE warning out for us tonight. No snow flurries but theyre saying we could see some this morning.
    I hoping it doesn’t get as cold as they’re saying tonight as I don’t want to loose even more stuff then I did with last weeks freeze.

  • Reply
    April 23, 2012 at 8:01 am

    we are colder than the norm at 60, but going to 52 in the am and that is cold for florida

  • Reply
    Melissa P (Misplaced Southerner)
    April 23, 2012 at 8:01 am

    Yes, it’s downright chilly. As I write this, it’s 36 degrees. Really glad I didn’t plant anything yet. On the bright side, our spring has been absolutely magnificent! Because we had abnormally warm weather in March, many of the spring flowers got an early start. With the cool nights and mild days, spring has lasted and lasted. Everything has had an extended bloom period. What a spectacular spring we’ve had! (No blackberry blossoms yet, though.)

  • Reply
    April 23, 2012 at 7:57 am

    Yes, was 38 here in Cleveland and gave a good reason for a nice fire in the fireplace.

  • Reply
    sandy kueng
    April 23, 2012 at 7:49 am

    My Granny Brown would say, “Dogwood Winter, Blackberry Winter and it ain’t May” – as far as garden planting went. 🙂 sandyk

  • Reply
    Donna W
    April 23, 2012 at 7:48 am

    We had frost with 32 degrees Sunday morning, but somehow my garden (tomatoes and peppers included) escaped damage. I’m still trying to figure that out.

  • Reply
    Bryon Smith
    April 23, 2012 at 7:47 am

    38 in west TN. Blackberries are in bloom here also. Still waiting for warmer weather to set out my tomato & pepper plants.

  • Reply
    Karen Larsen
    April 23, 2012 at 7:40 am

    It’s a bit cool this a.m. in south east PA No blackberry blossoms here yet. Last year, the hubby bush-hogged all the canes down to the ground in early spring and we had NO berries! I think they”re still in shock.

  • Reply
    Tim Mc
    April 23, 2012 at 7:32 am

    41 degrees this morning in North Alabama, got to carry the coat to work today, suppose to be winds 10 to 20 gust of 30 at times staying in the low to mid 60’s, after being use to the 70’s and 80’s brrrrr…

  • Reply
    Sheryl Paul
    April 23, 2012 at 7:13 am

    We have no snow, but it is in the 50’s in my part of FL

  • Reply
    Canned Quilter
    April 23, 2012 at 6:45 am

    Light patchy frost but no snow in Northern Missouri..

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