Columbia Star Blackberry

Bradybb WA-Zone8January 20, 2014

I saw this new,still patent pending thornless,trailing Blackberry on and is the only one that I could see listed as having outstanding flavor.Several are rated as excellent.I'm not sure if outstanding is better than excellent.It is probably subjective.
During a small search,the only place I could find selling the plant is roots are sold out until 2015,but there are TC plugs and canes available.
I'd like to try them,but the 25 minimum are too many for me. Brady

Here is a photo of the plant,scroll down when getting there

Here is a link that might be useful: Blackberries for Oregon

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I need to get out to the caneberry open house next summer to see if this variety is on the puree sample table.

    Bookmark   January 20, 2014 at 10:45PM
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Larry, tell me more about the caneberry open house.

    Bookmark   January 21, 2014 at 1:13AM
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I would buy several of the Columbia Star blackberry plants. I have been searching for them too.

    Bookmark   January 21, 2014 at 6:11PM
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I came across the newsletter below published earlier this month that mentions progress on new blackberry and raspberry varieties. It also mentiones Columbia Star. It also mentions ORUS 4024-3, which is a 'Tayberry' type caneberry... might be interesting.

Given my weather this winter, I may need a few replacements... :-(

Here is a link that might be useful: Small Fruit Update BerriesNW

    Bookmark   January 21, 2014 at 8:23PM
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Murky, apparently not on the 2014 schedule yet, scroll down to upcoming events at

Held out in the fields at the Research Station near Aurora, the year I attended they had a harvester machine and a puree sample table, dozens of raw berries and their puree, plus ice cream. That part may be subject to budgeting. But you are in on the ground floor for new varieties, growing methods, pests, etc. while there.

They just held a big blackberry confab at the Canby Fairgrounds last week, but the entry fee was quite high, intended for professionals only. The summer event is open to all interested.

This post was edited by larry_gene on Tue, Jan 21, 14 at 23:52

    Bookmark   January 21, 2014 at 11:33PM
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I noticed that Sakuma Bros has tissue culture size plants available for Columbia Star blackberry in smaller order quantities. It looks like you can order 9 tissue culture size plants for $27 + $27S/H to the Eastern US. Shipping may be cheaper for those in the central and western states.

    Bookmark   March 13, 2014 at 3:13PM
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Bradybb WA-Zone8

Thanks,I may try these. Brady

    Bookmark   March 14, 2014 at 11:22PM
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Scott F Smith(6B/7A MD)

Breeder Chad Finn is quite keen on Columbia Star, it scored similar or better than Marion in taste tests -- first one of the newer ones to do that! I have some on order.

Hopefully I don't get too many winters like the last one, the trailing blackberries are not looking happy at all. Black Diamond seems to be the main exception, it did very well. Full report soon.


    Bookmark   March 15, 2014 at 11:55AM
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drew51 SE MI Z5b/6a

Good to hear about Black Diamond as I'm adding it this year. My trailing look OK. I can't tell much until I see what grows. A touch of visible dieback, but only a little at the tips, not bad.
Looks like all survived 13 nights below zero all the way to -14 one night.

    Bookmark   March 15, 2014 at 1:18PM
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I placed an order for Columbia Star as well although I don't need 9 of them, probably only 3-4 tops. As for overwintering trailing blackberries, I'll wait for Scott to post his report and add to his post. I had some definite winners and losers over the winter.

    Bookmark   March 15, 2014 at 10:52PM
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fruitnut Z7 4500ft SW TX


I'd buy one or more off you if you are interested in shipping them. It could keep my new Black Diamond company. And sounds like it might be better.

    Bookmark   March 15, 2014 at 11:41PM
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Bradybb WA-Zone8

If available,I'd like to do that too jt.Two at the most. Brady

    Bookmark   March 16, 2014 at 12:34AM
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fruitnut and Bradybb - I'll hold 2 plants back for each of you. The plants should arrive at my home around the 27th. Once I have them, I'll reach out to both of you for your payment and shipping info. Jeremy

    Bookmark   March 16, 2014 at 10:29AM
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fruitnut Z7 4500ft SW TX

If anyone sees the ORUS 3447-2 anywhere I'd like to try that as well. Thornless and 50% bigger berries than Columbia Star. The fruits are 2 inches long!! It's pictured in the link above by jtburton.

    Bookmark   March 16, 2014 at 11:10AM
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drew51 SE MI Z5b/6a

Well heck i'll take one too, if you want to get rid of more!
If not cool, no worries.

    Bookmark   March 16, 2014 at 11:28AM
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Bradybb WA-Zone8

Yes fruitnut,those are big.They're like the Pakistan Mulberry of the Blackberry world.I found this information that says they may be available for trial,along with some other fruiting plants.

By the way,thanks very much Jeremy. Brady

Here is a link that might be useful: Whatcom Ag Monthly

    Bookmark   March 16, 2014 at 12:22PM
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You're welcome Brady.

Drew51 - i will save the last one for you, Jeremy

    Bookmark   March 16, 2014 at 1:44PM
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drew51 SE MI Z5b/6a

Jeremy if you want I could root tip a wyeberry for you, it's rare, but I'm not sure if it is all that? If it survived? It's buried under straw at the moment. Assuming it did, it would be fall before I could send. It was only a 6 inch seedling last summer, and it still produced 12 berries.
These berries are almost ripe, they get a little darker, but remain a red color. Tart, probably best for jam.

This post was edited by Drew51 on Sun, Mar 16, 14 at 15:22

    Bookmark   March 16, 2014 at 3:12PM
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Thank you for the offer Drew51. I'll have to wait and see if I have any room left for new varieties after planting Columbia Star. I had planned on only adding a couple of Loch Ness this year and replacing my Caroline raspberries with Glencoe Purple Raspberries. I had a few others that died during the winter that are also being shifted to other, more hardy trailing varieties.

    Bookmark   March 16, 2014 at 7:32PM
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drew51 SE MI Z5b/6a

I would like to get the Glencoe too, but went for Niwot black primocane instead. Room is an issue for me. I don't think the wyeberries are great, but I hate the fact you can't get them, so i will keep them going. I know others have them, but gardeners are the only source right now. They may be useful in future breeding etc.
Why are you replacing Caroline?
I'm adding Loch Ness also, Black Diamond too. And Jewel, it is a replacemnt (free) as last year's never came out of dormancy.

    Bookmark   March 16, 2014 at 10:13PM
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Caroline raspberries taste good but they produce a little bit each day but not enough to be useful. I would rather that all of the fruit arrive at one time rather than spread out over the summer and fall. Anne yellow raspberries are about the same way. Since the Glencoe plants will be arriving as TC plugs, I'll probably start them in pots then transfer them into the ground once they get bigger later in the year. I'll let Caroline produce the summer crop then pull it.

I planted Cascade Delight last year and if it survived the winter, I'm hoping it becomes a replacement for Caroline.

    Bookmark   March 17, 2014 at 8:57AM
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drew51 SE MI Z5b/6a

I agree the fall bearing produce less, but once established may produce more. My Fall Gold is 4 years old and each crop summer and fall produce over 300 berries. Cascade Delight should produce more all at once. I have Cascade Gold! It is the largest raspberry plant I have. The canes are huge! I do want a huge summer crop, but like picking them daily. I have enough plants to get about a quart a day, so that's plenty. I would like a good purple. Only place I'm lacking but I'm out of room.
Other summer bearers I have are Taylor, and Encore. Prelude is kinda in-between, it produces a fall crop, but a huge summer crop.
I do have one purple, Royality, It is a replacement coming this spring, so never tasted it, but reports I read is it is just average. I was going to replace it, but I could get one free, so I took it.
Do you have Black Diamond? Sounds like another good blackberry. I have one coming.

Again back to Fall Gold, the first couple years it was a shy producer. Once established I'm happy with production. I agree Anne is a shy producer, but may pick up too?
I'm also looking forward to trying Rosanna raspberry. it's supposed to taste like raspberry candy. Last year the fall crop didn't mature in time. I kept those canes so expect a summer crop from it. the same thing happened to Double Gold. So looking forward to trying it. But I have low expectations. I got Crimson Night. a dark red berry type, I discovered it is low acid, and frankly I like some kick. And it really isn't that dark. I'm not impressed. I'll keep it around anyway, I have a hard time killing anything. Mixed with the tart berries, it tastes good. i.e. I can find uses for it.
I hope Double Gold tastes better. Both are from the NY program.

    Bookmark   March 17, 2014 at 9:33AM
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I planted 5 Royalty last year and had a few berries from them. The berries were large but the flavor is not awesome...kind of mild. This may be influenced some by the amount of rainfall last year ( a lot of rain). What did peak my interest with them is that even on the bare room stems they produced a lot of berries for the amount of cane available. I can forgive the taste if they produce a lot a fruit. I also have Jewell and Mac Black ready to produce this year.

I have one Black Diamond going into its third year. I moved it from a pot to the ground last year and overwintered it outside this winter. Last year the plant remained rather small compared to the other trailing blackberries but did have a heavy load of berries (for the size). The flavor was OK but not awesome. The Black Diamond canes are a bit stockier and more rigid than some of the other trailing berries, so it did not want to bend down to the ground for protection. Because of this, I think it may have not have overwintered as well as some of the other trailing blackberries with more flexible canes (like Siskiyou and Kotata). Not to preempt my overwintering success stories, but both of those varieties did very well this winter.

    Bookmark   March 17, 2014 at 10:16AM
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drew51 SE MI Z5b/6a

Thanks for the info on Siskiyou and Kotata. I have those on my interest list.
I have Himbo Top raspberry, and taste is average, it's not bad, just not as good as others, but production is unreal, so yeah keeping it.

I looked at my blackberries again yesterday, and it's hard to tell what canes are alive or not. I need to do a little pruning, and I guess when I cut into them I can tell better.
Some for sure are alive as they are even green on the outside.
Thanks again for the info, I myself think a blackberry could taste great in the Midwest, average in the north east, and terrible on the west coast. Or any other possibility. So all reports are useful. Black Diamond is pretty good on the west, and may not be good here. Hard to tell, I think plants need to mature, the first berries really may not tell much.

    Bookmark   March 17, 2014 at 11:21AM
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I believe scottfsmith and fruitnut had good luck with Black Diamond, so it may work for you too. I would agree that there is considerable variability in 'taste' among the berry varieties and the growing climate probably has a significant influence.

    Bookmark   March 17, 2014 at 11:37AM
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Bradybb abd Drew51,

I received the Columbia Star Blackberry plants this week. Let me know if you are still interested in buying a couple of them.

    Bookmark   March 29, 2014 at 11:50AM
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Bradybb WA-Zone8

I sent an email. Thanks,Brady

    Bookmark   March 29, 2014 at 3:22PM
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Columbia Start blackberry plants are now available at Raintree Nursery.

    Bookmark   October 7, 2014 at 8:02PM
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