The summer of 2012 is a banner one for wild raspberries in the Adirondacks. Discouraged by this year’s dry spring and early summer, I had given up the hope of harvesting any berries from my newly tended patch here at HQ. Although the Adirondacks remain under a “High” fire danger alert, the recent localized heavy rains were enough to reconstitute the dry, pebble-like raspberries found hanging on the bushes only 10 days ago.
Wild raspberries are hardy perennials, with a wooden stem covered in small thorns, or prickles. The sturdy constitution of these fruit bearing bushes is a double edged sword; they are the first plant to become established after a section of forest is cleared or thinned and are tough to eradicate. Not shy about asserting themselves, wild raspberries can become a nuisance when they spread to spots where they are not wanted and they are prone to taking over.
Raspberries are one of my favorite fruits and I am not alone. The deer family who visit Adirondack Lifestyle HQ are also big fans of wild Adirondack raspberries. Mrs. Doe and her fawns prefer the newly sprouted and tender raspberry seedlings that surprise us all with their appearance mere days after being weed whacked to the ground.
This year’s prodigious berry harvest is also good news to our black bear and bird friends. I am convinced the birds sound more robust and are singing a happier tune since we’ve had some rain. The resident biologist says a good berry season will help keep the bears in the woods where they belong and maybe keep Yellow-yellow out of trouble.
Although he’s not missing any kibble meals, the official Adirondack Lifestyle hound is also a big fan of wild Adirondack raspberries.