Blackberry winter is a colloquial expression used in south & midwest North America, referring to a cold snap that often occurs in late spring when the blackberries are in bloom. Other colloquial names for spring cold snaps include "dogwood winter," “whippoorwill winter,” "locust winter," and “redbud winter.” The different names are based on what is blooming in particular regions during the typical spring cold snaps. Another colloquialism for these spring cold snaps is "linsey-woolsey britches winter," referring to a type of winter long underwear which could be put away after the last cold snap. The blackberry winter term may have arisen to describe the belief that a spring cold snap helps the blackberry canes to start growing.
In rural England, the equivalent term is "blackthorn winter", so-called because the blackthorn in hedgerows blossoms in early April, preceding the leaves, and presents an intense white spray against the black branches of the bush.
"Blackberry Winter" is also the name of a song written by Edith Lindeman and Carl Stutz. It became a back-door million-seller as the B-side of Mitch Miller's recording of The Yellow Rose of Texas, a #1 hit in the U.S. in 1955.It is also the name of a song by Alec Wilder and Loonis McGlohon.
- "Blackberry Winter". MDC Online. Missouri Department of Conservation. Retrieved 1 September 2012.
- "Consumer Questions". Georgia Department of Agriculture. Retrieved 1 September 2012.
- McLeod, Jaime. "What is Dogwood Winter?". Farmers Almanac. Retrieved 1 September 2012.
- "Edith Lindeman Calisch, critic and lyricist, dies" (PDF). Richmond Times-Dispatch. Richmond, Virginia. 1984-12-24. Retrieved 2015-01-25.