I've been wanting to incorporate cane fruits into my garden for some time now, and being spring I want to get them in before the heat of the summer.
On the weekend I bought a boysenberry plant. The normal advice is to trellis cane fruits, but I am wondering if there is a more permaculture way to go about it? I have seen some mention of them being used in tree guilds (e.g. blackberry or raspberry). Has anyone had success with this (or other ways) and how have you designed it? What sort of considerations do I need to take into account?
I grow my cane fruits as borders so fence lines and seperation hedges. The fences are there anyway so support is available, a green privacy hedge around an outside patio eating area is better for me than a hard fence.
Our inability to change everything should not stop us from changing what we can.
I learned the hard way raspberries dont like to be confined to a 4ft x 4ft raised bed. I think they need more light and airflow. didnt get much fruit this year. I hear lots of woodmulch. They are getting moved along our fences soon!
Thought I would share info I found while researching this further.
Brambles seem to be divided into two groups generally, the erect types and trailing types. Blackberries come in both types; raspberries are erect; boysen, logan, olallieberries are all trailing. The trailing types have a natural habit of creeping along the ground, so in normal cultivation they are always tied up onto a trellis to get the fruit off the ground and stop the plant from rooting and spreading.
Has anyone experimented with growing trailing berries along the ground?
i do grow my cane fruits NEAR fruit trees, however, i keep a good size path between them and the trees that they aren't allowed to cross..they are basically a hedge along the west side of our food forest, but I also have some beside our garage and one blackberry plant by my front deck..but think I might dig that out and move it.
I would NOT want to be traipsing through brambles to pick fruit
Bloom where you are planted.
I'd suggest going thornless if you can. The thornless types tend to be less cold hardy, though.
If you don't want to have a full fence or trellis, you can wind the trailing types around an object. Triple crown thornless blackberries, for example, can get canes that are 25' or longer if they are growing well. It's easy to loop them around something or back and forth.
I'd suggest avoiding letting them touch the ground from either the tip of the cane or any of the lateral growth. they root quickly and aggressively and start sending up new shoots soon after. Sounds great, but pretty soon you have a thicket that makes it very hard to get through or around to pick anything.
If you want more canes, just take a growing cane and slice it up into ~1' pieces and shove them in the ground if it is a wet time of year, or a bucket of wet sand if it is dry. they root quickly.
"Limitation is the mother of good management", Michael Evanari
Location: Southwestern Oregon (Jackson County), Zone 7
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