Prime Ark® Freedom Blackberry


I’d give them another chance next year, they might turn out fine, this is only their second year. My scrawny little 2ft lone Caroline cane has fruit buds on it, so I might get some berries off it this year. My Prelude, Eden, Killarney, Anne, Nova and Fall Gold have much bigger canes and no fruit on them (except a few from the Killarney)


my anne and fall gold were planted this spring and all put out some berries . thing i noticed w/ raspberry. if your soil has alot of N they will grow big canes but no fruit. i learned this the hard way . i gave them some 10-10-10 for 2 years and got very little fruit but supersize canes. they thrive best with just some compost in spring and a thick layer of mulch to keep weeds down and keep the roots cool.


Does anyone grow this in Zone 9? I’m in Florida on the edge of Zone 9B / 9A.


I’m in 8a and they do suffer from the heat. I have them planted in afternoon shade and I get good production and taste. Mine never go dormant here but it doesn’t seem to hurt them. We have heat always in 90’s and up I to 100’s much of the time in summer.



Thank you! Our temps near Tampa never really get past the low 90s, but the direct sun is brutal. High humidity all the time, too.

This past May, we picked enough wild blackberries around a pond behind our house to make a delicious pie!!


Any recommendations for a couple new blackberries to compliment my PAF. I personally don’t care if they have thorns but I prefer to to have upright growth rather that sprawling trailing type. I think I also prefer primocane berries so that I can wack them down at the end of summer. They don’t seem to be able to handle the cold as well as rasps so I plant to cut them down and cover them to help protect them. I tried Triple Crown. It died before ever producing fruits but I hated how it grew. I was thinking maybe PAT and the Stark Black Gem berry. Any thoughts?


I have Traveler, planted alongside Freedom, Osage and Ouachita, all upright thornless varieties. The Traveler has produced a few primocane berries, with a few more to come. The flavor was OK, not really sweet, and big seeds. Berry is about quarter sized. Still tastier than our wild BB’s.

My PAF has some blooms on it, so we ought to get our first berries from it soon. The last two varieties are floricanes, but that’s OK with me. All of them have got so big that they are no longer upright, they’ll be trellised soon. I wish I would have done that earlier, and tipped them, as I probably would’ve got a bunch more primocane berries.

The only other primocane blackberry I know of is PA45, but it’s thorny. @clarkinks planted a bunch of those last year, but I think they got hit hard by a severe winter.

Haven’t heard anything about Stark’s Black Gem, but I think it’s a U of Ark primocane variety. So, it ought to be pretty good.

As you can see on another thread, I have 5 Triple Crown plants that have really taken off. Yes, they are trailing, but I got them trellised. Next year we ought to have more berries than we can handle.


The winter killed them to the ground and then the drought finished them off. The lesson i learned is i should spring plant 45 blackberries in Kansas so the root system is deep and the top does not winter kill. That first year is critical and my test crop of 2017 are fine because of the difference in conditions. 2018 was the worse drought my area has had since the 1930’s drought! The winter temp was only -10F but it was long lasting which meant the cold and ice reached the bottoms of those new roots. No matter what i did this year it was a losing proposition to start new plants. Noone can win all the time and it was my turn. Remember i still wound up with lots of fruit and no fungal or bacterial disease losses so what i lost i gained in other ways.


My last PAF of the year. My primocanes frequently grow in doubles and triples but this one is picture worthy… very sweet when eaten too!



Now that is a nice blackberry @k8tpayaso! Never saw one like that before! Must be some kind of a record.


Sort of looks like a ball and claw table leg?:thinking:


I’m jealous! now thats a berry!


Took me 4 bites to eat this one!! Lol. It did taste good too!!!



Mine are already waking up! Blooms and new growth made it through the dip into the mid 20s my area just had.


At the crfg scion exchange in costa mesa i picked up a blackberry on a whim. The tag says prime ark 45. However, the plant is thorn free and i thought prime ark 45 has thorns. After checking dave wilson nursery website i couldnt find mention of prime ark 45, only of freedom which is thornless. I also visited the cal poly nursery which according to dwn carries prime ark freedom. They had plants which were tagged on the pot as freedom (tag was a cal poly tag), but the dwn tag indicated it was 45. The plant was also thornless.

Does anyone have PA45? Is it thorny? What are the chances that dwn sent out the wrong tags with all of the freedom black berries?



@clarkinks ordered a bunch of PA45’s a couple years ago, he could maybe comment, even though I think he lost most of them to extreme cold. From what I’ve read they’re thorny.


45’s do have thorns and freedom does not have thorns. The 45’s im growing are actually very thorny.


So you actually had some 45’s survive? I thought the deep freezes + extreme drought finished them off. How cold did it get that winter?

How did your Freedom’s do?


The large order all died but my test crop of 45’s and freedom lived and are doing ok. It has been a harsh year this year so the next year coming up must be an incredibly good one to make up for it.