Blackberries in Zone 10?

lizzardlyFebruary 13, 2010

Is anyone growing blackberries? I live in St. Lucie and would love to plant some for my 11 yr old. They're his favorite thing ever. I'm a transplant myself and getting kind of tired of planting things that don't stand a chance down here. If you have been sucessful and would share your tips, tricks and variety I'd be grateful.

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buckcity(08)

You might consider a black raspberry called 'Mysore."

Here is a link to Purdue with information:

http://www.hort.purdue.edu/newcrop/morton/mysore_raspberry.html

    Bookmark   February 13, 2010 at 5:48PM
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xentar_gw

According to one website, here are some of the blackberries and black raspberries rated for zone 10: Hill/Mysore (hard to find), Sawtooth wild blackberry, and Tayberry. I've heard that the Mysore black raspberry will do well in south Florida, and I'm sure the wild sawtooth blackberries would do well too, but they may be invasive in your area.

There are a few 9b blackberries that may be borderline in your zone: dewberry 'southern', Himalayan blackberry.

With blackberries, the same as almost any type of plant, you have to see where their native to usually to see if they would do well in your area. If they're from the pacific northwest or any arid state/country, there's a good chance that it'll be too hot, wet, or humid for them in Florida. I've tried and lost several cultivars for those reasons.

I would really like to try both the tayberry and mysore black raspberries here in Florida myself. Tayberries can be found at various online nurseries, but mysore raspberries are something that occasionally just popup at places like home depot or lowes or something.

I know it's not much to choose from, but you guys get the mangos, carambola, papaya, and all kinds of other tropical fruits there that we can't grow in northern Florida. The grass always looks greener somewhere else!

As far as tips and tricks... You know, just put up a trellis in an area that is well-drained and has full sun, plant them in the ground, maybe with a little peat moss or composted pine needles in the hole. Mulch with pine bark or pine needles. Fertilize lightly the 2nd year maybe in fall and spring, creating an 18" circle around the plant with a citrus, azalea, or camellia fertilizer.

After berries are picked the 2nd year, trim the fruiting canes down the the ground but leave any new canes. Hopefully, the wildlife will leave enough for you to reap the benefits of your labor!

There are several trellis systems people may use for blackberries, but basically, if you're planting trailing blackberries, you'd put your first wire at around 2' from the ground and then every 12" afterward, up to about 4' or 5', and as the canes grow, you'd just weave the canes up to the various wires. With erect and semi-erect varieties, some people would use a 2-wire trellis. One would probably be placed at around 2' and then the 2nd wire probably 4'.

The other 'obvious' trellis that many people already have in their yards are fences.

Tip pruning will also promote new shoots to form, and depending on variety, some people may prune them every 4', others every 6'. Using a combination of tip pruning and training, you can have multiple shoots running across a trellis and multiple tips layering themselves in the ground at the same time. In two years, you could turn 3 blackberry plants into probably 50. A lot of times, they'll tip layer themselves even if you don't want to do that. So, keep an eye on them!

Good luck

    Bookmark   February 13, 2010 at 5:56PM
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gcmastiffs(z10 Florida)

Apache Blackberries do very well here in zone 10. They are thornless, produce delicious, juicy fruits and are not fussy about soil.

It is getting very close to, if not the end of planting them here. You need to order/plant them in winter.

They are sold bare-root, and are not expensive.

They require pruning each year, and some support (I grow mine against a fence) but are quite easy and prolific.

Lisa

    Bookmark   February 13, 2010 at 7:06PM
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buckcity(08)

Just Fruits and Exotics has several of the Arkansas hybrids like 'Apache.' I didn't know how well they did in zone ten.

Link: http://www.justfruitsandexotics.com/Blackberries.htm

I grow 'Kiowa' in North Florida and like them a lot for cobblers.

    Bookmark   February 13, 2010 at 7:44PM
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coffeemom(Broward z10)

Lowes has Mysore raspberries and did have Natchez blackberries. Natchez is thornless and is said to grow in the same climate as Apache.
Go-buy-plant-experiment. I'm looking forward to us all reporting back next year.

    Bookmark   February 14, 2010 at 7:41AM
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an_ill-mannered_ache

yeah, i noticed those natchez. anyone had any experience with natchez? i had always read that natchez and apache don't grow well south of north florida, but of course i'd trust lisa long before i'd trust ifas. if apache, then maybe natchez?

    Bookmark   February 14, 2010 at 8:14AM
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sharna

please email me at 7panda@att.net. I tried to email lisa but it says I don't take
clips which I would but don't know how to fix. I really really want all the info
I can get on growing apache here and if anyone has any info on natchez here
and south. thanks so much! If this approach is not allowed please tell me how
to do it right.

    Bookmark   January 4, 2011 at 10:15AM
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loufloralcityz9

I bought one of each of the blackberry plants; Apache, Natchez, Arapaho, Quachita, and Triple Crown to try growing blackberries here in zone 9. I do have a thorny type of blackberry that grows wild on my property and the birds are spreading it around.

I bought the five blackberry plants from the Florida nursery in the link below.

Lou

Here is a link that might be useful: Blackberry

    Bookmark   January 4, 2011 at 1:17PM
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adc1947

I would try KIOWA....chill hours are said to be 200-300.

For the past two weeks, I have been considering which blackberry varieties to plant for my homegarden.

The main thing I see OMITTED from 99% of the nursery information on various varieties is the NUMBER of CHILL HOURS a variety requires. Information like...."XYZ" blackberry will grown in zones 5 - 9. Sure it will GROW in all these zones, but will it produce blackberries if it needs 700-800 chill hours...?

The chill hours have to be correct for the variety you choose to plant. Sure "XYZ" will grow in zone 9...but it will only PRODUCE fruit in zones 5 - 6 because zones 8 and 9 don't have enough chill hours!

Guess it doesn't make any different if you are just in the business to SELL plants. :(

Apache ..... 800-900 hours
Arapaho .... 400-500
Chickasaw..... 500+
Chester .... 800-900
Natchez .... 400-500
Navaho ..... 800-900
Ouachita ... 400-500
Kiowa .......200-300
Triple Crown 700+

(the above based on info. I have gathered)

    Bookmark   February 5, 2011 at 8:41PM
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thomas12

I have planted the following blackberry varieties in Orlando: Natchez, Apache, Chickasaw, Triple Crown, Arapaho, Black Satin and Ouchita.

By far the best is Natchez, then Ouchita and Arapaho. Orlando got about 350-400 chill hours this year so that would agree with the chill hours listed above. The other varieties don't even fruit for me this far south.

I will try Kiowa based on this recommendation as well.

    Bookmark   April 26, 2011 at 2:20PM
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saldut

Why don't you try Mulberries ? They are delicious and grow very well in Z 10, and look similar to Blackberries... I have several bushes in my back-yard and keep them pruned down so I can reach the fruit, and you can tie the canes down as well to reach the fruit.... sally

    Bookmark   April 27, 2011 at 5:46PM
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miamimami

I also have a mulberry tree that has been quite prolific this season. and its been very easy to grow down here in miami. and so delicious! i was getting about 5 cups a day at the height of its fruiting season. last year i would get barely 1 cup a day.

i did pick up a blackberry bush at a local farmers market recently. it was about 2 feet high and had semi-ripe berries on a few of the canes. they ripened, were delicious. and since i bought it in march, its tripled in size. so i am hopeful that i picked up a variety that requires few chill hours and will fruit again next season. from what i have experienced so far, it grows fast and will take over a fence easily. i already cut off the canes that fruited. and now will try to figure out a place in my yard where it can spread and be happy!

    Bookmark   April 27, 2011 at 11:01PM
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thomas12

That's great, miamimami! Do you happen to know what kind of blackberry you have? Does it have thorns?

    Bookmark   April 28, 2011 at 8:27AM
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amberroses(10a)

I have a Natchez that was new last year. It did set fruit this year and seems to be doing ok. I know there were plenty of chill hours during the last two winters, but that may not hold true in the future.

    Bookmark   April 28, 2011 at 8:47AM
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jwahlton(9B Kisimee)

I'm not impressed with the Mysore. I don't care for the berries and that thing is aggressive! Mine is HUGE and the thorns tear you up!

    Bookmark   April 28, 2011 at 9:54AM
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bamboo_rabbit(9A Inverness FL)

What is wrong with the Mysore berries? Good size, juicy and sweet with a real black raspberry flavor. I do agree the thorns are brutal but trellised they are not an issue.

    Bookmark   April 28, 2011 at 1:32PM
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jwahlton(9B Kisimee)

BR, maybe I'm picking too soon because mine are small and squish when I try to pick them! A lot are still red, I'm waiting for them to turn black. I was thinking of just cutting off the whole fruited piece then pick off the individual berries. I didn't plant mine in a good spot and it has gone wild!

    Bookmark   April 28, 2011 at 2:05PM
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miamimami

@thomas19 - the blackberry bush i have is thornless. however, the container it came in was discarded by my lawnguy, so i couldnt get the variety name. i actually dont recall it having one but it did have the originating nursery and their website. the next time im at the farmers market, i will ask the vendor.

    Bookmark   April 28, 2011 at 5:57PM
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bamboo_rabbit(9A Inverness FL)

Julia,

That explains it. Next batch wait until the entire cluster turns black and when it does only half will be ripe. The way we were taught on the farm is you put the cup under the cluster and lay the tip of your finger on the berry and push down. If the berry is ripe it pops right off in to the cup. Never use your thumb and index finger to pick raspberries and never pull at the fruit as you simply break them and get blue fingers:)

Far as size of the berries....like any raspberry they will set far more fruit than they should. For example and this has no basis in exact numbers just as a demonstration. The plant will produce 5 lbs of berries.....that 5 lbs can be made up of 5000 berries or 2500 berries that is completely up to us gardeners. Like all raspberries judicious pruning in the dormant season allows us to remove half of the fruiting buds and what that does is allow all the energy to go in to the remaining fruit. You still get the same number of pounds of fruit the fruit is just much larger.

Let me go pick a few and measure them. I will say that they seem to like and respond well to mulched soil as it stays moist. Mine only get about 5-6 hours of sun a day.

That is one of the bigger ones and a smaller one the larger is about 3/4 of an inch and the smaller one 1/2 inch.

    Bookmark   April 28, 2011 at 7:07PM
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jwahlton(9B Kisimee)

Awesome. I have to look at mine in the morning. I'm sorry to kind of hijack this thread, but it's also telling the OP about the mysore raspberry!

    Bookmark   April 28, 2011 at 8:07PM
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bamboo_rabbit(9A Inverness FL)

Well they are a black berry:)

    Bookmark   April 28, 2011 at 8:55PM
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thomas12

Thanks, bamboo_rabbit! The Mysore raspberry I got from Lowe's looks nothing like the one in your photo. It has red fruit, but not in clusters like yours. That is really strange - you'd think they would be the same, right?

    Bookmark   April 29, 2011 at 1:26PM
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bamboo_rabbit(9A Inverness FL)

Thomas,

Do you think your plant has red fruit because the tag said so? If that is the case Lowes plant people are clueless, I brought it to Lowes corporate office attention that the picture on the Mysore tag was very very wrong lol. My plant pictured above is what the Mysore fruit AKA Ceylon Raspberry aka hill raspberry fruit actually looks like.

Below is a picture of the tag that came with my plant that shows the Mysore having red fruit. Lowes has since changed the picture on their website.

Here is a link that might be useful: new Lowes mysore picture

    Bookmark   April 29, 2011 at 2:31PM
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bamboo_rabbit(9A Inverness FL)

Thomas,

Now if your plant has produced red fruit I guess that means Lowes goofed and put the wrong tag on. The new picture Lowes is using is of a northern normal black raspberry, it is not a picture of the mysore raspberry but at least it is close to representing the plant it is supposed to be.

    Bookmark   April 29, 2011 at 3:12PM
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thomas12

Thanks Bamboo, that's the exact label I have and the plant produced red raspberries. I guess I will have to buy another one, hopefully a real Mysore. :)

    Bookmark   April 29, 2011 at 4:41PM
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bamboo_rabbit(9A Inverness FL)

Thomas,

The problem is it will only produce the red raspberries for one season then it will never fruit again. I called all over looking for the Mysore last year and when I called the Lowes in Brooksville and they said they had them I went right over. When I saw the tag I knew something was wrong but the plant looked right and had the right thorns so took a chance they were mysore and was very happy when they finally fruited to find it was the right plant. Not sure where you are but could give you some tip cuttings to root if you want the plants. I am in Citrus county.

    Bookmark   April 29, 2011 at 5:55PM
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thomas12

Thanks for the offer, Bamboo! I live about 80 miles from you, so I think I will pass. On the other hand, I just planted Kiowa and Tupi blackberries. Both are low chill, thorny. My Natchez is doing ok, but it is obvious that it did not get enough chill hours. I hope these low chill varieties will be better.

Thomas

    Bookmark   May 2, 2011 at 4:40PM
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bamboo_rabbit(9A Inverness FL)

Thomas,

I have the Kiowa and Natchez as well as Ouchita. All the plants are doing ok but the deer are being a pain.

    Bookmark   May 2, 2011 at 9:08PM
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thomas12

Bamboo, luckily I have a fence that keeps the deer out, but they destroyed my young avocado outside the fence. I put Dial soap on it and now they leave it alone. Who would have thought that that actually works! hahaha

    Bookmark   May 3, 2011 at 11:39AM
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bamboo_rabbit(9A Inverness FL)

Thomas,

Thanks for the tip I will try that. I use a scarecrow which is a heat and motion activated water cannon but I only have one and have multiple places to protect. Interestingly they leave the mysore raspberries alone almost completely. I guess the ultimate solution is to fence it in.

    Bookmark   May 3, 2011 at 1:04PM
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Farmer_Tyler

I grow and sell Mysore black raspberries in Gainesville, FL. They thrive here. If you're interested in getting one send me an email. tylermbaras at yahoo dot com
I wrote a post in my blog about propagating Mysore black raspberries through tip layering. The link is below.

Here is a link that might be useful: Farmer Tyler's Plant Projects and More

    Bookmark   September 30, 2011 at 3:59PM
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bamboo_rabbit(9A Inverness FL)

Farmer Tyler,

I have 90 row feet of Mysore and adding another 60 feet of them. I agree on the tip layering and have about 40 of them tipped in pots currently. I don't bother with a mix for the tips I just fill the pots with the soil growing between the rows. In my experience burying them deep does not work as well or as fast as tips that are placed against the surface of the soil in the pots. The other problem with burying them deep is some stems will simply rot off.if the tip is placed against the soil and grows into it there is no rotting. Just something you might want to try.

    Bookmark   September 30, 2011 at 5:38PM
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Farmer_Tyler

Hey Bamboo Rabbit,
Thanks for the tip (haha). Are you growing Mysore to sell the berries/plants? I was wondering if there is any commercial production of Mysore in Florida?

Here is a link that might be useful: Farmer Tyler's Plant Projects and More

    Bookmark   October 25, 2011 at 5:43PM
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tinael01(10A)

This link tells you how many chill hours you can expect in your region

Here is a link that might be useful: florida chill hours

    Bookmark   October 25, 2011 at 6:29PM
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bamboo_rabbit(9A Inverness FL)

Farmer_Tyler,

I do not sell the plants or the berries, I do give quite a few of each away though:) I have not heard of any commercial plantings of the Mysore in Florida and from what I read that when tried on a commercial basis ( I think in Hawaii) they lost money but that was just berry production.

    Bookmark   October 25, 2011 at 9:09PM
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rainman777

I'd like a good cross between one of these cultivated varieties and one of the wild varieties that grow in florida

    Bookmark   January 12, 2013 at 9:12PM
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Fascist_Nation(9b)

I'd stick with Texas developed blackberries: Rosborough and Brison. 10a. Brison ripens 2 wks before Rosborough, but not as heavy a producer. Need some break from the heat and direct sun.

Here is a link that might be useful: Womack Nursery

    Bookmark   January 13, 2013 at 6:22PM
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adc1947

*** thomas12 wrote:on Mon, May 2, 2011 .... I just planted Kiowa and Tupi blackberries. Both are low chill, thorny. My Natchez is doing ok, but it is obvious that it did not get enough chill hours. I hope these low chill varieties will be better.

Thomas12, or any others, Where to buy the Tupi variety blackberry...??

I have not been able to find anyone selling them...I just need a couple plants to give them a try...

Please reply...and thanks!

    Bookmark   February 5, 2013 at 10:43AM
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marshmasterpat

Anyone here growing blackberries in the SE TX area? Want to know what is growing successful in this area. Planted some Ouachita but want try several.

    Bookmark   March 29, 2013 at 10:53PM
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adc1947

Kiowa will likely prove to be the best, but has lots of thorns. My neighbor grows them and has GREAT results. I had good results with Natchez and they are thornless. You have to trellis them as they vine.

I also have Ouachita, but the Natchez outproduced them 10 fold. This year I have planted the Kiowa and soon to plant Osage, a new one from Univ Arkansas.

    Bookmark   March 30, 2013 at 9:55AM
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marshmasterpat

Anyone near the Beaumont area to Galveston area growing blackberries.

adc1947 looked at Natchez but worried about the chill requirements, but they are on my list to try.

Ordered some Kiowa, boysen, and Tayberries to try, have 2 Ouachita growing, but was thinking to plant 8 to 10 plants.

Anyone having any luck growing in the blackjack or black clay gumbo in this area. Have them in18 and 21 diameter raised round containers holding about 15 inches of soil. Clay down here is horrible.

    Bookmark   April 14, 2013 at 1:45PM
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mattloxfl(10b)

You may want to go a different route if you have the space. I planted a Mulberry that I bought from Costco but I know it was sourced from Pine Island Nursery. The thing went from a 4' tall stick in a 3 gallon pot to a full on bush with a 12 -14 ft diameter in one years time. The coolest part is that it is pretty much everbearing here in Palm Beach County. It may go dormant in the cooler months. The fruit is very much like blackberry.

    Bookmark   April 16, 2013 at 12:27PM
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