Purple raspberries/comparison

Who has tried purple raspberries?

I planted a Glencoe, but no fruit yet. Next year I will have some.

How do the purples taste? More like reds or blacks? Also, has anyone compared Glencoe to Royalty or Brandywine?

I just discovered some purples in my patch that was supposed to be yellow. I like them. They do have a little different taste. More like black raspberry taste. Starting to like them more as it looks like they are smaller and bushier. I have yellows like 8 feet long going everywhere.


royalty is a big plant with a big crop of big berries. if you prefer the red flavor, pick them red. if you want more black rasp. taste, let them get dark purple. the dark ones make a awesome jam or pie. canes need trellising or the berries will weigh the canes to the ground. very productive plant. havent tried the others.

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Royalty is the only purple raspberry Iā€™ve tried, but my experience like the others above is that its an extremely large and vigorous plant, and yields a lot, and good sized berries too. It doesnā€™t have as strong a raspberry flavor as some reds, but itā€™s stronger than others. I prefer the ā€˜tartā€™ kind myself, but Royalty is a definite keeper, given the yield. I just wish Iā€™d spaced it maybe 3 feet from adjacent plants, rather than just 2 feet. Despite the vigor I havenā€™t noticed too aggressive of suckering yet, but this is only the second year itā€™s been here, and last year it started as a twig.

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On Monday ā€¦ I pulled 2 red currants and 2 jostaberry from beds in partial sun locationsā€¦

I tried them first in full sunā€¦ they did not like that at allā€¦ died first yearā€¦ then tried them in this location where they get 4 hours morning sunā€¦ shade during mid day and a little evening sun. Still they just did not like itā€¦ never really put on new growthā€¦ died back someā€¦ and had aweful leaf blight looking issues.

Anywayā€¦ pulled them. Going to replace with something elseā€¦ and Purple Royalty is one thing I am considering trying in that location.

I can deal with large aggressive growersā€¦ and heavy producersā€¦ I have loganberry already and the primocanes on those will easily grow 15 ft or more and they produce like crazy.

My concern with purple royalty is exactly when they will ripen hereā€¦ if in July I will have to bag to protect from SWD.

If in Juneā€¦ would be better.

@steveb4 ā€¦ or othersā€¦ do you know or can you estimate when your purple royalty ripens first fruitā€¦ and when they are finished for the year ?

I am sure they would ripen earlier for me down here in southern TN than they do for you all that are much more north of me.



Most of what Iā€™ve read says that the purples grow more like black raspberries in that they donā€™t sucker a lot, about the only way they ā€œspreadā€ is if the canes hit the ground, and they tip-root.

mine started ripening last week and i get a couple pints from one plant every couple days now. i would think yours would be a month earlier.

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steveb4ā€¦ Thanks for the ripening detailsā€¦

I bet you are right that they would ripen about a month earlier for me down hereā€¦ possibly ripening a few late June, but the bulk of the harvest would be early / mid July (worst possible time for me SWD wise).

I really need to stick with soft fruits that ripen in Juneā€¦ if ripening in July I would have to bag to get good fruit.

I think I will get one purple royalty, just to try it out and find out exactly when it ripens hereā€¦ with hopes that it may ripen earlier than we are thinkingā€¦ If it is still ripening fruit into July I will have to bag themā€¦ but it would not be too bad to bag one. It sounds like just one would produce quite a bit of fruit.

I have two beds in that locationā€¦ (previously had red currants, and jostaberry) in thoseā€¦

I also have my eye on ā€œSilvanberryā€ Per Oreganberryā€¦ Silvanberries are a cross between Marionberry, Pacific Blackberry, and Boysenberry. Per data I have collected on them, they ripen fairly early (I expect mostly in June for me), very vigorous and thorny (I have no prob with thorns)ā€¦ Large size, soft dark purple fair shape excellent flavor, yield very high.

Also considering Tayberry, Columbia Sunriseā€¦ for more earlier ripening berries.



prelude reds ripen around the 4th here. earliest raspberry i know of. fruit are good. not overly sweet but good raspberry flavor and productive. probably ripen for you in may.

Yeah Prelude is pretty good but itā€™s a floricane berry. If TNhunter is willing to go with floricanes I would think there would be several he could do. I actually left all my raspberries to grow as floricanes into this spring just to see how they did. Including royalty, and royalty seemed to do quite well as a floricane. So I got a floricane crop from royalty here in zone 5B I think from mid-june through the beginning of july? Soon after prelude. I donā€™t have my notes accessible right now. But for floricane berries I really liked Killarney. Good strong raspberry flavor there, good size, and pretty productive. It produced about the same time as royalty, as a floricane.

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my royalty only produces on floricanes. no primocane crop. you sure you have royalty not something else? ive been switching to floricane fruiting cultivars preparing for the day SWD arrives.

I have Glen Coe and some more or less thorny purples that I grew from seed. They have all turned out to be rather hardy here at z4a. You can definitely taste the black raspberry in the berries but some plants favor red raspberry more than others. Hard to clone though, they donā€™t arch as much as pure black raspberries do and donā€™t sucker. Royalty I understand, does?!


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My Glencoe arches enough to tip-root.

Glen Coe does, the seed grown ones donā€™t.

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Royalty does sucker quite a bit. a half dozen a season. nice if you want to start a patch of them.

So far Amethyst seems to be a superior variety of purple raspberries. I will put this note here for folks that are interested.

Amethyst was recently re-discovered by Jim Walla in North Dakota. It was released in about 1951 and lost to cultivation until recently when he began propagating them and selling them to locals that needed something to grow in the harsh winters of ND. He is an active member of his community in growing things to eat in their climate.

He sent his samples to Hartmannā€™s to get them virus indexed and they were clean and free of diseaseā€¦ however it seems that Hartmannā€™s decided to go ahead and give them to whiffletree without asking or careā€¦ which i guess is ā€˜businessā€™. Jim and I think that Hartmannā€™s will eventually start selling them alsoā€¦ which he is ok with. He wants the world to enjoy them as he does and his community.

So they are currently being sold in Canada thanks to Hartmanns

Mr Wallaā€™s plant.

Jim and I are working on bringing Wyoming Purple back to the lower 48 of the US. It was lost to Canada where it has been for a good while. Victor from Alaska acquired it from the USDA germplasm repository and grew them from cuttingsā€¦ and passed them along to Jim which made them to me.

Most reports of Wyoming are that the berries are soft when ripeā€¦ but nobody really knows how they will do in a warmer climate than Canada or Alaskaā€¦ as they only have a small window to grow/bloom and fruit.

Amethyst does not suckerā€¦ it grows tightly near the crown and primocanes stay near the crown. Thick strong canes that are very spiny.

Wyoming grows prolific and sends canes wherever it pleases. It is tough to manage. Also has strong spiny canes.


Hartmann also sells Trader mulberries which is from Jim as well. i got 10 coming in a few weeks. i also got 5 ohio treasure black raspberries coming. they fruit on primo and floro canes.

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Ive not seen much discussion on Ohio Treasureā€¦ but in case anyone cares in the future - Its a hybrid of fall bearing red raspberries and black raspberries. Red raspberry parents are Josephine and Caroline which alot of folks like and Jewel Black Raspberry which alot of folks like. It was created by Harry Jan Swartz who also created Wyeberry and a few other berries that have also fallen out of favor.

Ohio Treasure never really got popular due to small berries that are soft, and on top of that they ripen very late which in the southeast can be problematic. A novel plant to haveā€¦but pretty much inferior on alot of levels.

For the cold living folks that want a good option there is Mac Black which if you read descriptionsā€¦ the zone hardiness is Z5 and upā€¦ that is false.
You will be hard pressed to find a good history on Mac Blackā€¦ but it was developed in Ontario Canada and has some cold hardy red raspberries in its parentage. Mac Black survives North Dakota, and even Alaska. However it is the latest ripening of the black raspberriesā€¦ which keeps it out of favorā€¦and the zone hardiness reported on most vendors sites keep it from being bought by northerners.

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where did you find that info on ohio treasure? the info i found was it was a rare wild black that fruited on primocanes. i researched it awhile back and thatā€™s what i came up with. good to know about mac black. im also interested in Pequot blacks developed by Jim Fruith. honeyberryUSA sells them but they are always out of stock. could i hit you up for some cuttings of the hardy blacks you have or convince you to tip root a few for me? im sure i have something to trade that you would be interested in.

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In the patent by Harry Jan Swartz.

The stuff you read was likely ā€˜Ohio Everbearingā€™ which originated in Cincinnati OH. from 1832.

Pequot Black Rasp should be sold by Honeyberry USA nowā€¦ their snow just melted and they should be shipping them. I would rather them get the money than anyone elseā€¦ they have kept it going. Hartmanns offered Jim Fruth a dime or something per plant.

I have every black raspberry that is known to exist for the most partā€¦ except Niwot and Born Free which are patented and dont really interest me anyways.

Everyone that has shipped or traded cuttings has failed for the most partā€¦ There is an art of sorts to it and not much room for error. Jim Walla taught me his technique and i am going with it going forward.

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