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Do Blackberries Have Thorns: Are They Poisonous?

Blackberries fruit is tasty and juicy, but one might wonder if the thorns protect the yields.

Generally, most Blackberry varieties, like Wild, Kiowa, Darrow Thorny, etc., have thorns, but there are also thornless varieties like Apache, Chester, Arapaho, etc. Moreover, those thorns bear toxic furanocoumarin causing several skin infections.

The thorns on the plant protect the plant from birds and herbivores, but people prefer thornless varieties for easy harvest.

So, go through this entire article to learn about the thorny and thornless varieties with gardening tips for thorny Blackberries.

Do All Blackberries Have Thorns?

Blackberries have three types: erect thorny, erect thornless, and trailing thornless.  

Usually, most Blackberry species, like wild, Kiowa, Darrow Thorny, Newberry, etc., bear pointed angular thorns on their stems. 

However, you can also find some thornless varieties like Apache, Chester, Arapaho, Tame, and many more.

Blackberry plant with thorns
The angular thorns of the Blackberry plant protect it from herbivores.

Among thornless varieties, Navaho bears the best Blackberries with an excellent sweet flavor.

Moreover, thornless varieties are very easy to maintain as there will be nothing to pierce your skin while caring for the plant.

Also, thornless ones spread less than Blackberry plants, with thorns protecting other plants in your garden.

Are Blackberry Bush Thorns Poisonous?

The angular thorns in Blackberries are not only painful, but they also contain a toxic chemical called furanocoumarin.

After the thorn pierces your skin, furanocoumarin will resist the ability of the body to protect itself from harmful UV rays.

As a result, you may suffer from burns, blisters, rashes, redness, and many other skin problems.

Moreover, the thorn puncture may cause swelling and inflammation in your joint.

How To Garden Blackberries That Have Thorns?

Gardening Blackberries with thorns is messy as the prickling things may hurt your skin and irritate you while maintaining.

Thus, you must wear thick gloves and long-sleeved clothes to protect yourself while caring for these plants.

  • Always work slowly, taking enough time while gardening.
  • Thin out the bushes every spring before new growth for easy harvesting in spring.
  • Create a steel barrier around the plant to protect your kids and pet.
  • Provide the plant with a trellis from the seed or seedling stage.

  • Prune your plants using shears with long handles.
  • Plant your thorny Blackberries, providing them with proper spacing.
  • Ensure to grow your Blackberry with its best companion plants.

From Editorial Team

Prevent Your Thornless Blackberry From Reverting To Thorny!

If you notice your thornless Blackberry starts to develop thorns, it’s probably due to mutation or genetic variation.

Isolate your thornless from other varieties with thorns to prevent it from pollinating with them.