2018 berry plant progress and harvest report


#1

OK, since folks have already posted some pics of some blackberries and strawberries in the daily thread, I thought we should start a new one on this year’s berry harvest.

Whatever you’re growing and picking, be it blacks, rasps, gooseberries, blues, strawbs, service, goji, honeyberries, elderberries, currants, huckleberries, you name it, please post your pics and reports on your plants’ progress and your berry harvests.

As for us, we have Earliglow strawbs ripening now, and hope to sample some soon. Our Jewel plants are blooming and have very small green fruits on them. These were planted last year.

With our two year old gooseberries, we have Oregon Champion producing a couple dozen fruit, and a Jeanne plant with some small berries.

I planted lots of brambles over the last couple of months, so no harvest there, obviously. But all 10 of the new rasps and 4 blackberry plants have sprouted, and 5 Triple Crown’s are up. Hopefully the primocane varieties will give us a few berries to sample later in the year. We have a summer red and fall bearer that was planted last year, but don’t think they’'ll produce any this year.

Our blueberries are still small, planted last year, but our Patriot plant does have 3 or 4 berries on it, so I might let them mature.

Alrighty then, let’s see some of y’all’s delicious berries!


#2

OK, I’ll post a pic to start it off. Here is our first Earliglow strawberry of the year. Was not quite ripe, but I had to try one. I cut it in half and gave my wife the other half. Had a pretty good flavor, and already a bit of sweetness. I’ve heard they don’t need much sugar, so that’s good. Look forward to many more to come. Our first fruit of the year.


#3

I got BLACKBERRIES!!! Ouchita’s are at ripening time here!


#4

One of my 4 Mulberry trees is producing T

oo…

this was a few weeks ago. There was nice ripe fruit on it today so i ate it!


#5

Question about summer red raspberries. I understand these plants fruit on second year canes, called floricanes. However, I’ve read about so-called summer red varieties like Nova and Prelude may produce a small fall crop on the tips of the present year canes (primocanes). Is this true for other summer red (or black, purple or yellow) varieties? Maybe they call them summer varieties because they produce most of their fruit on floricanes, but still have a few berries on primocanes? Has anybody on here had that happen with summer varieties?


#6

Here is a picture of my blackberries Chester Thornless. They came thru the winter well, they were laid down and covered with straw. We never get fresh black berries up here so I am anticipating loving them no matter what they taste like.


#7

Picked a few more today. More plump ans much sweeter than la

st week!


#8

There are a few varieties that produce a few berries on the primocanes, like Nova Red Raspberry. I think Prelude might do this as well. I pulled my Nova last year because they were essentially behaving like a primocane-fruiting red raspberry. I’m not a fan of primocane red raspberries because mine tended to produce a few raspberries at a time over a long period. From the stand point protecting the berries from birds, etc. it creates a lot of extra work for not much in return.


#9

Nice. I’ve never seen pink berry blossoms. You said they were laid down and covered wih straw. But now it looks like they’re in a greenhouse?


#10

I’ll post some pictures after I perform some weed cutting. My Gooseberries and black currants are far along…should be ripe in less than 30 days. All of my blackberries are blooming now. Wyeberries are probably the farthest along. I put a lot if effort into rebuilding 3 12 foot raised beds for Wyeberries, Cascade Delight Red Raspberry, and Brandywine Purple Raspberry. I also added two red currants.

I’m reducing my plants, and consolidating the others for easier care. All of my blueberry bushes are now in a single row. That includes northern high bush, rabbiteye, and a hybrid.

For the first time, I cut my Prime Ark 45 down this year, so they could produce a clean Fall crop. They already look healthier. I added about 10 various eastern blackberry plants last year, so I should have nice production again next year.

I’m still in the western trailing blackberry business. I was thinking seriously about pulling all of them but I have finally found a few varieties that can tolerate colder weather. Newberry and Boysen are both reasonably cold hardy and taste very good. A have a few other varieties that are barely hanging on, so they may go at the end of the year.


#11

Excellent, those look great. I didn’t know Ouachita had such big berries, they look almost as big as PAF’s.

What do you plan on doing with all of them? I’m sure you’ll have a large harvest off of 9 plants this year.


#12

We’re getting some gooseberries on our two year old Oregon Champion plant. The biggest now are about 1/2" wide, and the Jeanne plant has a few smaller GB’s on it.

Are the PA 45 berries good? What eastern blackberries did you add? I think you had Osage and Ouachita already? Regarding your Nova berries, now did they taste?

We’ve had a lot of rain the last couple of days, almost 5" in less than 48 hours. But, the berry plots look OK considering all that water. When I prepared my runs, I tried to put them on small ridges and build them up with extra soil so they’d drain better. Plus, the soil doesn’t have a lot of clay in it, so the water doesn’t stay for long.


#13

I already have some mature Osage and Ouachita but planted a few Natchez, Sweetie Pie, a couple more Osage, and one Von. I also found four hybrids that the birds planted, so I moved those into a small area to see what they turn in to. I have had good luck with Osage and the flavor is pretty good too. I had several triple crown blackberry plants but they went into decline after two bad winters in a row and I had to remove them. They are harder to maintain, so I have not replaced them. It is really easy to over plant and then start to neglect everything because you are spread too thin.

The PA 45’s also taste pretty good… they consistently produce a nice crop in the Fall until frost, which is really cool when you are otherwise getting fresh blackberries from Mexico in the grocery store.

Blackberries tend to handle the wet soil a bit better than raspberries. My soil is mostly all clay, so I have to add a lot of extra amendments to help the berries grow.

As I mentioned in another reply to you, I gave up on the Fall Raspberries a few years ago. They just didn’t produce enough to do much with and at the time I also had problems with SWD during the Fall. SWD seems to have subsided now in my area but I stuck with Summer raspberries so I could produce enough at one time to make some jam. Purple raspberries make amazing jam although they are bit underwhelming for eating them fresh.


#14

I have 3 Grand daughters a stepson and his girlfriend my wife and i will eat a bunch right fresh in a bowl. My stepson’s other Grandma will be baking us some COBBLER!!! Can’t wait!


#15

Totally understand the soil amendments jt. I have very clayish soil as well and I did good amendments on my Ouchita’s but for some reason not my Triple Crown. The TC are suffering for it. I’m going to Trellis and replant the TC…


#16

The first winter they were outside and covered but our season is so short the berries did not ripen in time so I moved them into the greenhouse. My greenhouse is not heated in the winter, it is used to extend the season. Although it gets just as cold in there during the winter nights as outside, I have a theory ( which is probably off the wall) that the winter sun heats it enough during the day to mitigate some of the damage a prolonged cold spell can do.


#17

We’ve picked a few more Earliglow strawberries over the last couple days despite the downpours. The dark red ones are pretty sweet and have a good flavor. I’m not a connoisseur of strawbs, but these seem to be pretty good. Still early to tell how the rest will be, but it’s a promising start.

The patch seems to be handling all the rain pretty well, but I need to get some more mulch down as some of the berries are on bare wet ground now.


#18

Well, the Jewel row has contributed some new ripe berries today. These berries seem more elongated and firmer. I prob should have let them ripen more, but couldn’t resist. The taste is more tart than sweet now, but these are the first ones. These plants are really pumping out the fruit now.

My wife picked about half a dozen EG’s this morning. I sliced some up and had them with my cereal, very nice. It’s neat to walk out to the back yard and pick a handful of them now.


#19

I think one of our newly raspberries has bit the dust. The Double Gold plant sprouted about two weeks ago, but wasn’t very vigorous. It soon started to droop like it had been sprayed, but none of the other plants in the run look like that, so that’s not it. It was acting like that before we got the big rains last week, which I’m sure didn’t help matters, although the run hasn’t had hardly any standing water in it. The Royalty purple rasp is not doing so great either, but it’s still alive. Hopefully the drier sunnier weather will help.

The new blackberries are doing great, the PAF and Ouachita are both about 8" tall now, and the others close to that. The Triple Crowns are also doing very well.


#20

Before I left this morning, I did a quick inspection of the strawb patch, and discovered 5 of them on the lower row of Jewel plants had missing leaves :rage::angry:. Whether it was deer or rabbits, can’t say for sure, but didn’t see any hoof prints. Strangely, none of the berries seemed to be missing.

So, when I got home I reinforced my fishing line fence. Now that it’s been raided, though, it may be difficult to prevent any other incursions.

I knew it was just a matter of time. What makes this particularly infuriating is that the patch isn’t more than 50ft from the back door. Insolent bast***$.