Healthy and nutritious, growing blackberries will bring you health benefits, not to mention a lovelier garden. Here are the key pointers to remember.
Where to Plant Blackberries
If it’s fall season, you can grow the seeds in a cold frame. It also helps if you keep the seeds in moist peat moss. You also need to refrigerate them for 4 weeks. If you want to plant indoors, do it at the onset of spring.
You shouldn’t plant this near flowerbeds because these plants like to spread out. The soil also needs to have excellent drainage. Avoid planting them in areas where the water accumulates into a pool.
Soil and Sun
The light loam soil is ideal for growing blackberries. But with enough organic matter, the plant will adapt well to other soil types. Maximum sunlight is recommended. The more sun it gets, the more fruits will be produced. Too much heat isn’t good however so partial shading will be recommended when it gets too hot. Good air flow is needed to keep diseases at bay.
Planting and Watering the Seeds
As soon as spring warms up, start planting them. Ensure that the soil is loosened to a substantial depth. Excavate a hole for each plant. Spacing should be at least 3 feet per plant. If you’re growing blackberries in rows, space them by 5 feet.
The depth for each plant should be similar. If you’re planting in a container, the soil needs to be a little deeper than when planting in the ground.
Arrange the soil so air pockets are eliminated. Water the plants when you’re finished planting. Watering should be no more than 2 inches every week during the summer. Reduce this when it’s rainy season.
Add mulch to the young plants. This will prevent moisture from seeping out. At the same time it keeps weeds at bay. If you’re harvesting, you can set the blackberries along a trellis. This also helps make them more manageable.
Part of growing blackberries means pruning them too. Wear gloves when removing the thorns. Make certain you use sharp tools for cutting them off. However some variants don’t have thorns; it depends on the kind you’re planting.
Pinch off the tips of all new canes. This is necessary so shoots will appear on the sides. It’s from these shoots that the next batch of blackberries will appear. If it’s fall, prune canes that had fruits. Get rid of all the clippings. Leaving them behind will make the plant susceptible to infection.
For spring, thinning to 5 to 7 per plant is ideal. The side branches on the other canes should be 12 inches. If necessary, fasten the prunes to the fence. Again, remove all dead and infected canes.
Various medications are available for blackberries. Follow the instructions to avoid mistakes when using any medication. Keep the garden clean to discourage insects and fungus from appearing.
Growing blackberries takes a bit of skill, but it’s something anyone can learn. By caring for plants in the abovementioned manner, expect to reap a bunch of these fruits.