"willamette thornless marion" Thornless Marionberry looking for a source

Hello, I have found mention of a new as in it was patented in 2017 cultivar of thornless marionberry. I found the first mention about it here Thornless Marionberries reduce liability concerns and I found a page about the patent being approved but I cannot seem to find a source for ordering some plants. I have white blackberries and black blackberries along with raspberries but I want to add something else and these look to fit the bill. The only other thornless marionberry I could find is apparently limited to England.

As of 2012 the ‘developer/finder’ had not been able to obtain a patent…but already had 200 acres of thornless “Willamette” marionberry growing somewhere in Washington state.
Somebody else might see if the patent was ever obtained?
Could still be waiting on a Patent before distribution?

Well there is this page US Patent for Blackberry plant named ‘Willamette Thornless Marion’ Patent (Patent # PP 28,309 issued August 22, 2017) - Justia Patents Search . Which seems to indicate that the patent was granted on August 22, 2017.

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Very good. You’ll probably find it for sale soon, if not this year.

I’m going to stick with Marion myself, I had many thornless types, and to tell the truth, I didn’t really like any of them. Triple Crown, Navaho, Lochness, Chester, and Natchez They produced well and were easy to manage, but lacked that wow factor. I removed all of them. When you put a ripe marion in your mouth Wow is the first word. My bets are they will lose that.
New Berry to me is even better, more productive, and Siskiyou is decent too. I kept those, and the flavors are amazing. You can’t buy this stuff! But i see some would rather not deal with the thorns. I hate them too. I was bummed about the flavor of thornless although Triple Crown and Navaho were pretty good fully ripe and I might have kept those, but they ripened in the middle of SWD season and were always covered with them. New Berry ripens just before, the others I kept also ripen during SWD, but are exceptional and better than even TC or Navaho. Plus these thorny trailing vines (all of them are) are much less invasive. It took 3 years to actually remove Triple Crown. Every piece of live plant left in the ground sprouted leaves for 3 years! A real pain to maintain order with these. The roots in the ground were a nightmare. I still have some 4 years later. I saw two while cleaning the bed for the fall cleanup.Another favorite of mine is Tayberry. It too is thornless trailing. I just like the way all these ground huggers taste. I also have wyeberry yet another thorny trailing that is just like Boysenberry except it’s bigger and ripens easier. Both of these ripen way before SWD.


Didn’t you post something about using food-grade DE on berries to prevent SWD? I think all the floricane berries (except TC) will be done before SWD becomes an issue here, if it even does. I have Freedom and Traveler, and their primocane fruit might be susceptible, but we’ll see.

I was tempted to try Marionberry last year but went with the thornless UA varieties, plus Triple Crown. After fighting our very thorny wild canes for the not so good BB’s we get, I wasn’t wanting to deal with them on domesticated plants.

Mind you, the bar is pretty low for me when it comes to blackberries, especially the sorry wild variety we have.

I may still try MB, guess I’ll need to see how the ones I already have turn out. Are your MB canes hardy enough or do you have to protect them?

Yes, and it worked somewhat, but it had to be applied a lot. It’s at least not toxic if consumed.It washed right off so not a big deal. It was too much work. Now I just have a few i spray and control is a lot easier. A mature thornless blackberry plant will produce between 300-500 berries under ideal conditions. I would get about 7 gallons frozen after eating fresh 3 or 4 gallons from a few plants. Triple Crown, Lochness, and Natchez produced like this. Navaho was more like 100 or so. The trailing produce about 50-100 each. Not the best producers, But I have Marion, Newberry, Wyeberry, Siskiyou, marion, and tayberries. So I get around 500 berries a year. That is just about right for me. Newberry and syskiyou can produce a lot in a good year, 1-200 a year.

You know we are all different. I think you may like Triple Crown. Same as you the wilds suck compared to Triple Crown. Suck in every way possible, TC is bigger produces like crazy, and has a much better taste. I didn’t prefer them because unripe most thornless have a certain aftertaste I found unpleasant. So I tried to pick only ripe, but a few unripe ones always ended up in the bowl. The western berries I prefer don’t have this taste at all, ripe or unripe.

I hope Willamette is better, and glad people are trying it.

They have to be protected. It is not at all easy to grow here. I bury them in leaves each fall. Or use Wilt Stop on exposed canes. Wilt Stop doesn’t work on many things, but works well with western blackberries.
Yeah I didn’t mean to discourage anybody from trying other berries. just relaying my experiences. One major experience I have learned is you have to try them yourself, as often I found the favorites just so so. Some people said others were bland that I found very good. I learned that I must try myself before I make a decision. I would start with thornless, then later try others. New Berry is great but currently is impossible to find. It has Boysen, Logan and Marion in it’s linage. I don’t know anybody selling it? Out of all I have it is in the top three of all I have tried. Marion is great, but so is New Berry. They do not taste the same but New Berry is bigger and more productive… And hardy enough for here if slightly protected. If unprotected in may lose floricanes, but roots are hardy here.
Same thing happened to the wyeberry, nobody sells it. It is a bigger version of Boysen, but ripens earlier. It tastes and looks like Boysen. Except again it’s bigger and ripens earlier. I had both side by side for years. Oh it’s more hardy too. I pulled boysen as most floricanes never made it here. So glad to have these and have traded numerous clones. I need to make more backups for myself next year. Every year it seems I trade away backups! I can make multiple backups so trades are open. I can tip root them but they will not be ready till fall 2019.

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Thanks Drew for the detailed response. Sounds like the thornless are quite the producers.

While I’m sitting here listening to some music (Beethoven), I dug into the harvest times of the blackberries I’m growing. I got most of the data from UofA’s website, so their times will vary compared with mine, obviously, but it’s a good indicator of what to expect.

Floricane production:

Variety-----Start ripen------Peak-------Finish----
Triple Crown-7/17----------------------------8/14

Primocane production:


Yeah, I’ve got too much time on my hands. Hurry up spring…

I might have to hit you up for some Marionberry cuttings next year then…

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I second that! Osage is a good choice. I never tried it, but it is supposed to be excellent. Those are all fairly early too! You made excellent choices.
I’m excited about having another lot to play with. I’m putting in Mulberry, blueberries, honeyberries, Currants, hazelnuts, and serviceberries. I probably will put the blueberries in next year. It’s at my cottage on Russell Island and the ferry starts running about April 7th. I’ll be up there at that time planting my butt off! the property already has peaches, grapes, and strawberries. I will be putting in some hybrid pluots too. I grew them from seed as experimental trees for new one of a kind pluots and plums. All trees will be multigrafted as time goes on. The Mulberry I have already and it is a rootstock with 3 cultivars on it. Sweet Lavendar, Wellington, and Oscar. It will be cool to have a tree with dark and white mulberries. I have other mulberries too, and may put more in. I have 3 trees total each with three cultivars. This is a blast. I need to plan out locations. hedges will be made with hazelnuts, serviceberries, currants, and honeyberries. I love the fruit from all of these plants. And most is fairly maintenance free. The peaches and pluots will just be test trees, and if the new cultivars are good will be grafted back here in the city. I plan to cross many more too, so this will be years of experimental fruit testing. Like I want to cross Candy Heart or Nadia both which have sweet cherry and plum, with Fall Fiesta which has sweet cherry, plum nectarine, and peach. Dapple Dandy produces like crazy here, very large delicious plums, So crosses of Dandy Dapple Jack and Dapple Supreme will be grown out in 2020.
All seem very well adapted to this environment. I’m really looking forward to all of this. Most fun I had since I started.


Wow, that’s a lot of work to do at the island home. I thought the cottage property had a lot of shade trees, wouldn’t that be an issue with some of your new plantings? I know some stuff like gooseberries and currants don’t need constant sunshine, but what about the others?

How big do your current and gooseberry plants typically get? Two of mine have been the ground going on their 3rd year, and they’re still only about a foot tall. Still alive, but not thriving really. The other is at least 2ft high, and gave us a few fruit last year.

Speaking of pluots, my three trees have done okay their first year, but deer have been grazing on them a bit. Probably won’t be until next year before they will be ready to produce, if they ever do (late freezes).

Of those blackberries I listed is Triple Crown the only one you’ve grown? What about the two primocane varieties? If so, when did it start to ripen, peak and finish producing? Those dates I listed were for Clarksville, AR, so I imagine we would be about a month behind? Maybe we can also get some more info from our other berry expert @jtburton, if he’s still on here.

Impressive you remember! You have an invite now :slight_smile: We can catch some walleyes in the morn and cook them up for dinner! I really like them baked myself. Not sure why? Perch are great fried, but walleye is better baked. I just ate some salmon yesterday a friend caught in Lake Michigan. I gave him some of my home grown garlic and he pulled out some fish for me!

Yeah my daughter bought the lot, and it is much more in the open. It is a canal lot so water access. It is in a much more open spot on the island. I should be able to grow anything. She is working in California a few years so I’ll be maintaining the lot. She hopes to build on it when back in Michigan. She dislikes California and can’t wait to get back. She is near LA in some suburb. She is an excellent fisherman too, I taught her well :slight_smile:. I can’t wait to go fishing with her again! Last time we went we caught 11 walleyes, it was a good day! We drift down the river using worm harnesses. You can catch them at night off shore using pencil plugs too, but only at night. The biggest one I caught was 11 pounds 3 ounces. From shore too! I got lucky! Most are a couple pounds at best. Some years we get a lot of 5 and 7 pounders. When out fishing you have to watch not to drift into the freighter channel, they can’t stop!


Well, we have always wanted to go to Michigan for a vacation, so now we have an excuse. Those are some big freighters, probably hauling iron or aluminum ore? Or perhaps grain.

Regarding fish, I hated it as a kid, but now will eat about any kind, even the raw versions! My favorite may be red or rainbow trout, with salmon close behind. Love a good tuna steak, too, but a bit pricey. Don’t know if I’ve had walleye, though.

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Having some blackberries is better than no blackberries :wink: The Arkansas varieties are fine…I vote Osage as the best of that lot. In NKY it ripens in mid-June to mid-July. Triple Crown is later…mid-July to early August. The primocane crops on the Prime series ripen around the end of August into early September. You will probably get earlier dates by about a week due to being in the southern part of the state. The floricane crops on Prime are early…before Osage by a week or two if they make it through the winter, They are only cold hardy to about 0F.

I agree with Drew on Marionberry, Newberry, and Siskiyou having the best flavor but they are not easy to grow. I also like thorny Boysenberry, which has a sweet-tart flavor and seems to be pretty cold hardy for a Western blackberry.

I’m focusing on growing more raspberries this year, since they have largely died off in my berry patch due to really wet Springs and my crappy clay soil.

Also… “willamette thornless marion” …Thornless Marionberry. was offered by Burnt Ridge in 2017 but do not have it and won’t be offering it again.


Hey Jeremy, good to hear from you. Thanks for the ripening time report, looks like Triple Crown is the latest cropper, at least for floricanes.

Well, I don’t know if we are that far south, we are close to Portsmouth, Ohio, up in the hills, so maybe a bit SE of you up the river. We probably will have very similar ripening dates.

Have the non primocane blackberries been pretty hardy for you? I see that it is supposed to get down to single digits next Monday night here, so that concerns me. Do you protect any of your UArk canes?

Those Western berries sound good, but guess we’ll give these a shot first. I’m not as big a blackberry fan as my wife, but I’m excited to see how these turn out. Should be a big berry harvest for us this year. Still waiting on our fruit trees to start producing, but at least the berries don’t take forever.

Which varieties are you trying this year?

I’ve had a hard time getting rasps to take here, but last year I planted 8 new rasps, and 5 are still here, to go with the 2 that survived the previous year. They aren’t nearly as vigorous as the blackberries, but hope they can survive this winter and the deer and finally get established. Our soil isn’t bad, but yeah, it was a very wet year last year.

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Yes, look me up for sure.

I know Iron, not really sure what else? i should know I have friends that work on the freighters! I will ask next time I see them!

It is related to perch, it’s even milder. It takes on whatever flavors you cook with it. It is never fishy. I myself like onion, garlic with butter. Or capers, white wine. and butter.

I’m not either, It is pretty good as a syrup. I like to make cordials, which is just water and as much syrup as you like. Flavored water, love it, drink it constantly and have to have enough for a year’s supply. using all of my various berries except blueberries and strawberries which are saved for other reasons. I want to grow some good wild flavored blueberries for cooking. I will be adding those types to the lot!

Hell ya! The wyeberries are very closely related to Boysen, yet are bigger, earlier and are hardy here. Boysen is not really hardy here. Good to see you around JT. I probably will get rid of Marion and/or siskiyou if I can’t get them to grow fairly well here. I have been protecting them in containers, I’m going to plant out all of them and see what happens. Boysen is out, too hard to protect, and if not protected here the floricanes die. Wyeberry can be left more exposed and most years it produces with no cane loss, but not every year.

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The Primocane blackberries (e.g. Prime Ark 45) reliably produce each Fall but no so much for the Spring crop. Long range forecast for early next week has the temps below zero, so that usually does them in. :frowning:

Raspberries are challenging here in KY where your soil may be all clay. To get them to grow, I have had to put them in raised beds and stick to summer-bearing varieties. Black Raspberries are native to the area, so those grow well but don’t usually live long (less than 4 years) due to their susceptibility to disease. They also tend to not produce a lot, so you need a lot of plants to get a decent harvest. The only red raspberry that has worked well for me has been Cascade Delight. I planted some last year and will plant more this year. I ordered Cascade Harvest (a cousin to CD) to plant this year. I have Jewel Black Raspberry and Brandywine Purple Raspberry (both planted last year) and they both seem like they grew well.

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Wow…is it really going to get below zero? I have seen from 9 to 15 in the forecast for Berea and Somerset…for next Sunday night…didn’t realize there was that much difference in NKY.

Sunday night is still 5 days away but it looks to be very cold.

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If you end up with any Wyeberry starts, hold a couple for me. I will send you funds to ship them…if you would be open to that. :slight_smile:

Yeah no problem! I might have some earlier. My son is buying me a cloner for my birthday.