Blackberries are a great, simple plant to grow that will provide delicious snacks to enjoy as spring transforms into summer. Plus, once they are ripe, they can be harvested every few days!
To get started growing these plants, there are a few things to know.
First, there are 3 types to choose from: erect thorny, erect thornless, and trailing thornless blackberries.
The 2 erect plant types are bushes that can support themselves. The final type, the trailing blackberries, need additional support; this support is typically provided by adding trellises.
Another thing to be aware of is that blackberries are perennials. This means that their roots will survive year after year.
The tops of the plants, however, are considered biennial. They will develop for a year, bear fruit the next, and then die; to replace the dead plants, the roots will send up new canes.
Planting and Care
For a bountiful harvest, plant blackberry canes shallowly in early spring.
To take care of blackberries, be sure to take the time to prune the plants. Basically, the idea is to remove old canes that already provided fruit; this allows new ones to take their place.
Blackberries need plenty of moisture, that is why mulching is important. Mulching allows for a conservation of moisture while also suffocating any weeds. Be sure to always keep a thick layer of mulch around blackberry plants. Additionally, the plants should be given 1 inch of water each week. If the temperatures are warmer, be sure to water the plants more.
Typically, blackberries will begin ripening in July and August. There may be a few still ripening in June, so be sure to keep checking on them!
Gardeners will know a blackberry is ready to harvest when it is plump and dark black in color. Any blackberries that are firm or are light purple or red in color will need a few more weeks to ripen.
From summer-blooming flowers to delicious vegetables, there are plenty of things that can start being planted now that Spring has arrived!
For more information about gardening various flowers, fruits, or vegetables for your garden, be sure to follow Senior Security Alliance USA! We update garden posts once a week and can be found on Twitter and Facebook.