Black caps and the dreams of childhood

For many of us, the common black raspberry (Rubus occidentalis) was the first foraged food of childhood.

Known here in New England as “black caps,” their vines can prick and scratch but lack the fearsome barbs of the blackberry cane.

Our small fingers learned the soft touch required to loosen the fruit from the stem without squashing our prizes, though stained fingers (and sometimes clothing) was the customary price of our harvest.

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