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Blackberry vine question..

Discussion in 'Fruits & Vegetables' started by RickF, Apr 24, 2018.

  1. Apr 24, 2018
    RickF

    RickF Deeply Rooted

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    Ok.. So this is year 2 of my blackberries in my front yard planter. Last year they caned as expected and grew 8-12 feet before the desert winds damaged some of them due to not having them sufficiently tied down to the trellis. Regardless, there are new branches coming out of the ground that are lush -- my question is do I keep the canes from last year? There isn't anything apparently going on with last years growth -- the leaves are still there but no new growth, etc.. Do I leave these canes as they are or cut them out? I watched a few videos on Youtube and it seemed like they should remain but I'm not so sure -- if there's nothing happening by now I don't expect flowers to pop out or anything.. ??

    Am I off base here?

    In the image below you can see the old growth from last year -- these canes got a bit beat up when the desert winds thrashed them a bit..

    IMG_2410.JPG

    There are 3 plants -- the two outer ones are the same variety (marionberry) but the center is a thornless bush variety which is currently flowering happily and is exempt from this conversation as it doesn't climb.
    IMG_7044.JPG

    In the image below you can see the new growth springing forth on the left plant.. Right now I'd guess that they're about a foot long or close to it.. Both outer plants are running at about the same speed.
    IMG_2663.JPG
     
  2. Apr 24, 2018
    Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner Garden Master

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    I'm not familiar with that cultivar of blackberry but from what I read I think these follow the normal pattern of blackberries, they bloom on the previous year's growth. There are a few exceptions to that, some varieties will produce a few berries on the canes that come out this year. But the vast majority don't.

    I would not cut them off yet. Since the two Marion are the ones that are not blooming, I wonder if it is just that they are on a later schedule. I have different varieties of blackberries and some are a little later than others. It's pretty common for pole beans to be later than bush beans. While it is possible that the wind beat those up so bad last year that they are not going to produce well this year, I'd be surprised if no flowers at all show up. I'd give them time.
     
  3. Apr 24, 2018
    RickF

    RickF Deeply Rooted

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    Thanks.. I'll follow your suggestion. I do know that last summer these same two vines did in fact have a couple of berries.. I'll also say that the new cane growth coming out this season is very much like the wild canes that I see in the Pacific NW on wild blackberry plants -- specifically size-wise. The new canes are probably 3-4x the diameter of last years growth and are as expected, not the diameter of a couple of toothpicks as last years growth are. It doesn't really matter whether I get fruit this year, but based on their growth habits just within the last few weeks I expect these two plants to put out 8-12' of new canes this year which ought to bring forth decent levels of fruit for next year. But, I have to secure them properly on the trellis as we do get crazy amounts of wind here that can just thrash plants...
     
  4. Apr 24, 2018
    majorcatfish

    majorcatfish Garden Master

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  5. Apr 24, 2018
    RickF

    RickF Deeply Rooted

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    cool. Thanks for the link..
     

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