Bramble (blueberry)

Rubus fruticosus

Also known as black-caps.

The story…

Bramble is native to Eurasia and very common on the five continents. It grows in hedgerows, wooded edges and forest cuttings, where it plays an important precursor role in the creation of a forest. It likes sunny areas and nitrate-rich soils, which is why it is often found near homes. Apart from insects and birds, brambles are a popular food for deer, foxes and some rodents. Blackberries are harvested around September; in the United Kingdom, tradition has it that after the Feast of the Archangels on September 29th, the fruit is no longer picked because the devil would have spat on it.

Uses

Nutritional value

Blackberries are particularly rich in antioxidants (specifically anthocyanins, which give them their dark colour), which slow down the ageing of cells and prevent certain cardiovascular diseases. They are also a source of vitamins B, C and E, provitamin A, as well as potassium, calcium, magnesium and iron.

Sore throat and cough

The disinfecting properties of bramble leaves help to reduce colds, angina and sinusitis. They soothe coughs and sore throats. The infusion can either be drunk or used as a gargle.

Preparation

Infusion: 30 g dry leaves per liter of water; leave to infuse for 15 minutes and filter carefully. Add honey.

Fruits: eat raw and fresh to preserve vitamins.

Precautions

In case of persistent symptoms or if you have any doubts, consult a doctor.

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