Raspberry Report, Summer 2014
Inspired by jtburton's thread on raspberry and blackberry harvests this year (95 posts and counting!) I thought I'd give my own. The summer harvest is just getting underway here in southern Maine, and I have several different varieties growing.
Yellow - Fall Gold, which was newly planted last year, has yielded a small amount of berries and is growing well. When ripe they have a nice, sweet flavor that I like. Primocanes growing well and I hope for a good fall crop.
Red - Prelude, newly planted this year, has thrown out a few berries, probably later this year than in future years since it's just getting established. Seems to turn a hint of purple when really ripe; all have tasted great.
Also have an unknown red variety from a coworker that has started ripening - it's tart and firm, and isn't so good if it's overly ripe. Makes good pies, though.
Purple - Royalty, planted last year, has set an enormous number of berries a few of which have come in. I wasn't sure I liked it when I sampled some last year, but this year I'm also able to try them at the "full red" stage which do taste remarkably like just a red raspberry, while the purple stage is more mild with more of a black raspberry flavor.
Glencoe, newly planted last year, was too small to have any fruit but is growing really well. Some of the primocanes started branching even before I topped them.
Brandywine was a big disappointment because I planted two last year, one started growing this year with disease symptoms so I pulled it and the other one, when it finally got around to fruiting, has turned out to be a black raspberry plant. I bought these at Home Depot last year before I new any better and now I know they were probably mislabeled. At least I like black raspberries but the size and flavor of these is inferior to either jewel or bristol.
Black - Jewel has started yielding and the berries are huge, much bigger than the small ones it produced last year. So far this year I've picked 33 berries and their average weight is 3.2 grams, one berry was a monster at 4.0 grams! I like the flavor of these a lot.
Bristol has also started yielding, berries are a little smaller than jewel, and don't taste quite as good, but are still good to eat fresh.