The Fruit Garden

Care & Cultivation of Blackberries, Boysenberries, Loganberries etc.

Care & Cultivation of Blackberries, Boysenberries, Loganberries etc.


All of these berries can be grown effectively against a boundary wall or fence. Otherwise plant in rows 1.8-2.1m (6-7ft) apart, each running north to south to catch maximum sunlight and supported on a system of posts and wires about 1.8m (6ft) in height. Strain four wires horizontally between the posts at 30cm (1ft) intervals, starting with the first wire at about 90cm (3ft) from the ground.

Plant 2.4-3m (8-10ft) apart, with the top of the rootball slightly below soil level. Finish by cutting the stem growth back to approx. 30cm (12in) above soil level.


Floricane varieties produce fruit on wood which grew last season. Although they vary a little in vigour and habit, the training and pruning is the same. In the first season after planting new canes will be produced from the plant base and these should be tied in to your support by weaving them horizontally around the wires (fruiting canes for next year). Meanwhile, new vigorous young canes (which will produce fruit in the third year) will grow from the plant base. Train these straight up the wires, vertically, in the centre of the bush. The finished effect at cropping time should be of a central growth of erect, young replacement stems tied into the wire, with older fruiting stems on either side.

When the older canes have finished fruiting, cut them out and replace them with the young vigorous stems until now bunched together in the centre. Untie these from their vertical position and weave them horizontally around the wires.

Primocane varieties fruit on current seasons growth and are all pruned in the same way, cutting the old canes back to soil level each year. However, since these fruit on the current season’s wood, prune the canes in February. The strong growth made during spring and summer will carry fruit in the autumn of the same year.

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