Easy to grow AND productive!
- Blackberries need at least 8 hours of full sun, and should be spaced 2-3ft apart.
- Amend the soil* thoroughly before planting. Mix in plenty of high-quality compost to existing soil, or create a raised bed by using quality garden soil.
- High nitrogen fertilizer is best applied in two annual applications:
- In spring, when the buds begin swelling.
- In summer, after the fruit harvest is completed.
*If soil pH is over 8.0, blackberries can exhibit interveinal chlorosis from iron deficiency, which is corrected with soil applications of iron supplements, or foliar feeding with seaweed with iron.
Blackberries are biennial plants having two types of canes. 1st year canes are called primocanes and 2nd year canes are called floricanes. Floricanes are flower-bearing canes, which die after the fruit crop matures.
- Every year after harvest, cut all old canes (the very ones you just stripped clean of berries) down to ground level. Allow only the vigorous new growth to remain.
- When these new canes reach 3–4 feet long, thin them so that only 5-7 canes per plant remain. At the same time, prune back the canes to 4 feet long to encourage branching, on which the bramble will fruit next year.
- Harvest when the fruit is dark black-purple, soft, and releases easily from the stem! At peak production, you may need to harvest daily. It may be helpful to use bird netting to protect your harvest.
- Brambles may produce shoots from the roots. These can be cut down to keep them under control, or with a sharp shovel cut out and transplant to propagate new plants.
Blackberries can become somewhat unruly. To keep them neat and simplify harvesting, we can trellis the plants. Consider using a one- or two-wire trellis (shown) to keep your brambles under control. Place plants about 36in apart regardless of trellising.
- Medium-large berry
- Sweet, firm fruit ripens in July
- Resistant to rosette disease and orange rust
- Very productive with firm and tasty medium-sized fruit
- One of the earliest ripening varieties
- Disease resistant
- Large, soft fruit with a tart, acidic flavor ripening in mid-May
- Vigorous grower and heavy producer
- Known for good disease resistance
- Very large, flavorful, firm fruit with a blocky, oblong shape
- Ripens in early June
- Good for fresh eating and cooking
- Stores and ships well
- Large, delicious, juicy, flavorful fruits that are elongated in shape
- Ripens in early June
- Known for high yields and good disease resistance
- Large firm fruit
- Upright habit
- Good disease resistance
Prime Ark 45
- Medium-large fruit
- Produces on 1st & 2nd year growth
Prime Ark Freedom
- Extra large, firm yet juicy fruit
- Ripens in July
- Fruits on first year growth, unlike most other blackberry varieties
- Large, juicy fruit with a delicious, sweet flavor
- Ripens in late May
- Heavy produces with good disease resistance