In 1909, the journal Folklore reported that in Worcestershire :-
11th October 2017
All children who gather or eat blackberries on or after the 11th October will fall into great trouble. It is said that “the Devil has his paw on them” on that day.
An extremely widespread superstition, found all over the British Isles, maintained that blackberries were bad,or even poisonous,after a certain date.
Michaelmas is the key day
Old Michaelmas Day was yesterday 10th October, Dog Whipping Day.
So common was the practice at one time,that every little street urchin considered it his bounden duty to prepare a whip for any unlucky dog that might be wandering the street that day.
The custom was said to have originated when a dog swallowed consecrated water during the service in York Minister .
( maybe he was thirsty ?)
But this leads me on to a couple of stories.
1. We are still picking Raspberries every day and it could go on until the end of this month
2. Tis the time of year to be making jam but we have been making Raspberry and Raspberry and Wild Blackberry JELLY ( picked earlier in the season and frozen)
Boil up 1.8kg of cleaned fruit to soften it.
Then put it in a jelly bag and extract the juice over night.
Then add sugar 340gm to each 1 pint of juice obtained and boil up
until jelly setting occurs when testing .
With Raspberries the pectin in the fruit is adequate.
Pour into sterilized jars. and label when cool.
The beauty of Jelly is that you can enjoy the flavour of jam
without the annoying little pips getting stuck in your teeth.
Jellies can be made of any fruit but testing for pectin in advance may be necessary.
Marmalade on the other hand is made at Christmas time
when the bitter Seville oranges become available.