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How do you say blackberry in Mexico?

Blackberries are a popular fruit grown and consumed in many parts of the world. In Mexico, they have a unique name that provides insight into Mexican culture and language. As a major producer and consumer of blackberries, Mexico has developed its own terms to describe this tasty fruit.

The Name for Blackberry in Mexico

In Mexico, blackberries are referred to as “zarzamora.” This is the common Spanish word used to describe the fruit across Mexico and other Spanish-speaking countries. “Zarzamora” translates literally to “brambleberry.”

The term refers to the thorny, brambly vines that blackberries grow on. It describes a key physical characteristic of the plant itself. Calling blackberries “brambleberries” highlights the fact that they come from a prickly shrub.

“Zarzamora” traces its origins back to the Latin word “sarza.” This described a jagged, rough plant that scratched the skin. Over time, it evolved to become “zarza” in Spanish, meaning bramble or brambly bush.

Regional Variations in Mexico

While “zarzamora” is used everywhere, some regions of Mexico have their own local words for blackberry as well:

  • In central and southern Mexico, they are sometimes called “mora.” This simply translates to “blackberry.”
  • In northern states like Chihuahua and Durango, blackberries are known as “raspberry” or “frambuesa.” This reflects influence from English terminology.
  • Some Indigenous languages like Nahuatl use the term “xocotl” to describe blackberries and other dark-colored berries.

So while “zarzamora” is understood everywhere, Mexicans from different backgrounds may also use regional berry names.

The Popularity of Blackberries in Mexico

Blackberries have a long history of being consumed in Mexico. Archaeological evidence shows Native Mexican cultures ate wild blackberries dating back over 5,000 years.

Mexico remains one of the leading producers of blackberries today. In 2020, Mexico produced around 120,000 tons of blackberries. The main production areas are in the western coastal states of Michoacán and Baja California.

Fresh blackberries are eaten raw or used in desserts like tarts. Blackberry jam and preserves are also very popular. Some varieties of Mexican liquors and wines are made from fermented blackberries as well.

Mexico also exports many blackberries to meet consumer demand in the United States and Canada. Blackberry production occurs year-round in Mexico’s favorable climate.

Cultural Significance

Beyond being a tasty fruit, blackberries hold cultural and symbolic importance in Mexico:

  • Blackberries are associated with festivals honoring the Aztec goddess Xiuhtecuhtli, who represented fire and heat.
  • The brambles represent protection in Mexican folklore. Thorny blackberry bushes are thought to ward off evil spirits.
  • Purple and black berries are woven into tapestries and clothing to symbolize wisdom.

This spiritual legacy remains even as blackberries are enjoyed today for their sweet flavor. The name “zarzamora” preserves their ancient heritage.


Blackberries have a rich history in Mexico, where they are known as “zarzamora.” This Spanish name meaning “brambleberry” references the plant’s thorny stems. While regional Mexican names exist, “zarzamora” is used and understood across the country.

Mexico remains a top global producer and consumer of blackberries. The name “zarzamora” reflects the country’s deep cultural connections with this delicious fruit. So next time you eat a blackberry, consider its long legacy in Mexican agriculture and folklore!

Spanish Name Meaning Region
Zarzamora Brambleberry National
Mora Blackberry Central and Southern Mexico
Frambuesa Raspberry Northern Mexico
Xocotl Dark berry Indigenous languages