Niwot vs Ohio's Treasure vs other black raspberries?

I’m looking for black raspberries to plant in my zone 5 yard. I’d prefer an everbearing variety, and it seems like the options for that are Niwot or Ohio’s Treasure. Does anyone have experience with those varieties (either or ideally both)?

Growing up we had both red and black raspberries and I always loved the black raspberries for their distinctive flavor. So aside from general plant health, hardiness, productivity etc, I’m wondering which variety has the best flavor, particularly the best black raspberry taste. (I know taste is subjective and hard to describe, I’m just hoping to hear some opinions on this).

Or if you’ve tried both Niwot and Ohio’s Treasure and neither are as good as other black raspberries, I’d like to know that too since I’d rather have a tasty variety that produces less than have lots of underwhelming berries. Thanks!

1 Like

I grew ‘Ohio Treasure’ for a while. I found it bland and less productive than floricane types.

Welcome to the forum!

The primocane I.e. fall or ‘ever’ bearing black raspberries are very new. I recall maybe 7-8 yrs ago the breeder of Niwot posting all about his creation on the NAFEX listserv. Noble work for sure. Hopefully he/she is well compensated. He is/was an amateur, I believe. Personally, I haven’t tried them yet, but I would assume based on their being so new that they may not match the flavor and quality of some of the better main season summer bearing types. I have ‘jewel’, a fairly common variety that is very good. The fruits are easily 3 times the size of the average wild blackcap. The flavor is quite rich and ‘jammy’ too. Some other “cultivars”, like ‘Bristol’, are probably just wild types that were selected for propagation for whatever reason. I’m not sure they have much to recommend them above wild ones you might dig and line out. There don’t seem to be all that many black raspberry varieties, probably because the wild ones are so tasty and productive. Wild red raspberries, by comparison, are pathetic in size, yield, and flavor compared to good cultivars.

I’ve got Niwot, as well as Bristol and Jewel. Evidently the growing season isn’t long enough here for a robust fall crop, so in that respect it is disappointing. The summer crop, however, is huge. As with all black raspberries, the flavor is not especially sweet. Many people focus on sweetness, so they’d consider Niwot bland. But I think it’s delicious. If you can press the pulp to remove the seeds, it makes an extraordinary sauce.

But if I said one thing for you to take away, it is this: Based on my experience here in Z6B/7A, you won’t ever get a good fall crop in Z5. Grow it for the summer crop or not at all.

1 Like

How does the Niwot’s flavor compare to Bristol and Jewel? Do you have a favorite of the three?

Well, now you’re gonna embarrass me. :slight_smile:

I made the mistake of growing Bristol and Jewel side by side in one bed, assuming that I could keep them apart and (even more important) remember which was which. Not! So I can’t say which is which.

That said, I can tell you that one of them is larger and slightly sweeter than the other (and than Niwot). The size / taste difference is mainly in the central berry that ripens first. But on average I’d say that that variety is better than NIwot. From what I’ve seen, Niwot is still more productive (summer crop).

Maybe you can check reviews of Jewel and Bristol and figure it out.

From what I’m seeing, Jewel is the variety with the largest berries.

I am zone 5 CO. I tried Ohios Treasure and Bristol. Ohios treasure never took off in 3 years of it being in ground. Bristol the canes got massive but neither of them ever produced a crop in the 3 years I owned them. They got a decent root system but never produced. I got a fall crop from a primocane blackberry, a fall crop from Anne but never a crop on the black raspberry. All they did was produce canes with a bunch of thorns. Someone in a CO Facebook group said that you should only try Primocane raspberry and blackberry because the Floricane will not last here. That was my experience. Maybe we just did not have the length of the season for the Ohios Treasure reading above.

Not sure if any pics of Mac Black on here.

Nice production of another. I am also using baling string on mine

1 Like

‘Mysore’ i have one youngling. Has seen 10F and hasnt died. Kinda hoped it did but going to give it a chance.