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Pruning boysenberries question--they're out of control!

 
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So my husband pruned the boysenberries a bit over a month ago.  He pruned them down to 2 simple canes per plant tied to a 3-wire system.  Last year, he did the same and they grew out and covered a path that we need and use.  The same thing is happening this year.  Here are pics of the growth already and soon that path will be totally covered and the canes will go over into that other area.  Can we just prune off the growth coming out toward the paths?  Online websites say not to prune at all during growth period and husband is worried about cutting off all new growth for next year's canes...


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pollinator
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Location: Providence, RI, USA
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forest garden trees urban
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Hi Beth,

Yep, boysenberries can be aggressive! It's hard to see how much space there is between the trellis and the path. Are you sure you gave your boysenberries enough room? That's what I would start researching, if the boysenberries don't have the recommended space, you may need to move either the path or the boysenberries if you ever want complete peace of mind.

Some folks say it's OK to trim them back during the summer and some say you should never do it. Be that as it may, I think most would agree that letting them trail along the ground is going to cause pest and disease problems. Can you tie them up to get them out of your way and keep the plants healthy? You're dealing with an aggressive plant here. If you've been fertilizing, maybe pull back on the nutrient next summer and see how that affects yield? That's where I would start. In the end, it probably comes down to your priorities and what you can put up with. :)

Good luck with this!

Karl

Instagram: @foodforestcardgame
Website: FoodForestCardGame.com
 
Beth Mouse
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Thanks Karl, great advice.  Thinking we may enjoy them this year but look for a new home this fall.  There are easier berries or something else to put in that area and we already have marionberries on a fence that we weave the long canes through.  They don't send out nearly the amount of shoots as those boysenberries.
 
Karl Treen
pollinator
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Location: Providence, RI, USA
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forest garden trees urban
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It wouldn't be the first time someone decided to remove boysenberries. Gotta warn you, though, it might take some elbow grease!

Enjoy them while they last.

Cheers!
Karl
 
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