Blackberry

Note: A very form-rich species, including numerous, sometimes difficult to distinguish, subspecies and hybrids between them.

Parts Used: Leaves, fruits.

Pharmacy name: blackberry leaves – Rubi fruticosi folium (formerly: Folia Rubi fruticosi), blackberry juice – Rubi Fruticosi Sirupus (formerly: Sirupus Rubi fruticosi).

Botanical description.Blackberry bushes are probably familiar to everyone. Their thickets, often completely impassable because of the curved spines on the branches, can be found in many places, both on the plains and in the mountains. Blackberry favorite places are landfills, light woodlands, clearings, roadsides and sunny slopes. Feature – flowering stretched from May to winter. During this time, there are breaks in flowering, then the bushes bloom again. On one bush, you can simultaneously find flowers and unripe and already ripe fruits. It is not often that blackberries bloom even with the first snow. The flowers are white and pale pink. The fruits are at first hard, like a stone, green, later they turn red, and as they ripen, they acquire a blue-black color. In numerous subspecies, the fruits are more or less covered with a light blue bloom, larger or smaller, watery or fragrant. Large pinnate lower leaves – from 5 leaflets, upper – trifoliate; leaflets ovate, pointed, smooth above, pubescent on the underside, with a serrated edge. Petioles and sometimes veins with spines on the underside.

Collection and preparation. Leaves should be collected at a relatively young age, but already fully unfolded. Late spring is the ideal time to harvest. The leaves are dried immediately after harvest. We can recommend artificial heating with a temperature not higher than 40 * C. Fully ripe fruit is needed to make blackberry juice. Only they are valuable.

active substances. Blackberry leaves contain tannins, organic acids, flavonoids, some vitamin C and traces of essential oil. The juice contains many valuable organic acids, minerals and vitamins.

Healing action and application. Blackberry leaves, due to the presence of tannins, are a mild astringent, which is well suited for the treatment of mild intestinal diseases accompanied by diarrhea (this is recognized by the German National Health Service). The tart taste of blackberry leaves is especially pleasant in all kinds of tea blends, the so-called homemade teas. The basis of this tea, together with raspberry leaves, is formed by blackberry leaves. Good tea will be obtained from blackberry leaves alone.

  • Blackberry leaf tea: 2 teaspoons topped with leaves pour 1/4 liter of boiling water, infuse for 15 minutes, strain and drink, either by adding lemon or sweetening with honey. Tea without these additives is used as a rinse.

My special advice.For those who want to assemble the ingredients on their own and make good homemade tea, I can recommend the following recipe: pick fresh, young raspberry leaves and double fresh blackberry leaves, mix them. Let them wilt a little and then knead them with a rolling pin. Sprinkle lightly with water, tie in a linen scarf and hang in a warm place. As a result of the fermentation process, after 2-3 days, a delicious aroma will appear, reminiscent of the aroma of a rose. Then dry quickly. The leaves prepared in this way will need to be stored in a tightly closed vessel. This healthy homemade tea is brewed like regular black tea. When preparing a tea mixture, you can add all kinds of medicinal herbs, depending on the need. Their ratio is determined by the goals that you will need to achieve. But in any case, a mixture of raspberry and blackberry leaves must be 30% of all medicinal tea. I’ll give you two examples:

  • A tea taken for colds that boosts the body’s own defenses and is also effective for mild coughs: A mixture of blackberry and raspberry leaves 10.0 Coltsfoot leaves 10.0 Linden blossom 10.0
  • A tea taken for indigestion that relieves stomach pain and also helps with diarrhea and bloating: A mixture of blackberry leaves and raspberries 10.0 Chamomile inflorescences 10.0 Peppermint 10.0

Preparation of both teas: depending on the circumstances, pour 1/4 liter of boiling water from 1 to 2 teaspoons of the mixture, insist for 10 minutes, filter. Another note about the benefits of blackberry juice. The hoarseness of the voice stops very quickly if you gargle with blackberry juice or drink it in small sips. At the same time, it should be slightly warm. Singers and speakers especially feel good about taking care of their overstressed vocal cords in such a simple way. Not in the last turn worthy of mention is the fact that with blackberry juice the body receives fresh life-giving organic acids, vitamins and minerals.

Application in folk medicine. Thanks to Galen, Pliny, and Dioscorides, we know that even the ancient Romans greatly valued blackberries. The young leaves were chewed to strengthen the gums and the young shoots were used for diarrhea and bleeding. Medieval herbalists (for example, Mattiolus, 1563) say a lot of laudable things about blackberries. Leaves, young shoots, flowers, fruits and even rhizomes were used – mainly as a blood purifier and fixative for gastrointestinal diseases. The plant has also been used for influenza, runny nose, fever, inflammation of the tonsils and skin rashes. All this is also recommended in the new herbalists of traditional medicine; it is wrong to limit the use of blackberries to leaf tea.

Side effects. Blackberry fruits and tea made from its leaves do not cause side effects.

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