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Mark Hickman
Posts: 3
Location: Perry Ga
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Newbie here, so I need advice.

I have a 4 acres place, well established transition from wild grass to burmuda. Planted two Podsednik pecans last winter, and five low chill apples from Centuary Farms, in NC. ark black, newtown pipin, carolona june, eisin spitzenburger, buckhrorn. Since the ark black and pipin did not make it, the seller is replacing them free, i am getting another ark black and a beavans favorite.

I started 4 years ago with a trial planting of Premier, Austin and Tiffblue. Did so well, that expanded it into a 70 foot row, and added a variety know as climax.
Premier is my berry! These are teouble free, produce huge crops for me and are large to extra large, like between a penny to a nickel size. Really nice bluberry flavor.
Last spring i doubled my planting by moving suckers, underground shoots that rooted, into anither row.

Planted about every 30 inshes or so.

I also raise bees in top bar hives, (stRting year three) and one of my beekeeper friends gave me 50 trailing blackberry plants (gave 10 to my son) and planted the 40 rooted ryzomes on a 70 foot bed, they have been growing quite well and i have begin to trellis them for next season flowering. Really dnt know what variety, plant grower locally told me that she gave the beekeeper Black Satin, but that is an upright type and these are trailing. I think this either a Chester or Hull.

I have been experimenting with table/wine grapes noted as releases of Thomas Munson (Kentucky/Texican), focusing on types for the steamy south.
So far Black Spanish (Vitus Bourquiniana) has done really well. I also have plantings of "Favorite" and some specimins of Cynthiana/Norton, Blanc de Bois, Herbemont, Hussman, and a few others. I also have 3 each of muscadin varieties Sweet Jeni, Fry, and Noble.
I have the grapes trellesed on a single wire in 200 foot rows suported by telelphone poles every 50 feet, and a 4 foot "t" post at each plant.
I am looking into plantings of blackberry vines by removing all or some of the grapes and transition into blackberry market growing.
Looking at some minor types also, Tayberry, Loganberry, Boysenberry as well.
Now here is the question: i would like to have an early, mid and i think i have late season ripening covered. What types for my area, upright or trailing that ripen in order.
Is Arapoho earlies? Followed by? With the Chester/Hull that i have as the late.

Also, i do have three Apache blackberries that do quite well.

Advice and comments appreciated.
 
Alder Burns
pollinator
Posts: 1387
Location: northern California
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I worked with blueberries and other fruit in a market garden situation for years in southwest GA. A few loose ideas:
--Do you know where/how you are going to market them? Unless you are near a town or major road, a roadside stand/pick-your-own might not sell much. And, unless awareness has risen hugely in the five years I've been gone from GA, there won't be much of a premium for organic unless you can get them to greater ATL.
--Berries are tedious to pick. During our 5 weeks or so of peak blueberry harvest, me and four to six other people didn't do much else but pick blueberries on a 1 1/2 acre patch. Some of these helpers were interns.
--I have seen operations where there is a whole other step...sorting the fruit after harvesting and then repacking into the market containers. To me this was a waste of time and effort and more opportunity to bruise the fruit. I would teach blueberry pickers to pick discerningly....eating plenty as they pick so as to learn which are truly ripe....it's a bit more subtle than "green to blue"...and pick directly into pint boxes held in gallon jugs tied around the waist. When full, they'd go into the flats and straight into the cooler.
--The biggest long-term problems with our blueberries were inadequate irrigation, which diminished yields and killed off some bushes in drought years; and weed trees and shrubs coming up through the bushes....these really need an annual clean-out in a system that won't use herbicides....
 
Mark Hickman
Posts: 3
Location: Perry Ga
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One year update.
Now have four 70 foot rows of blue berry plants
Premier in row one, with 2 Climax in line as polonators
Second row, mixed premier transplants, two pink lemonaide, and one powderblue
Row three, 30 Titan transplants that failed to make any growth, pulled them out and replaced with 6 Rebel (early) and 6 Star (early) and will fill in with the Titans once they mature in pots
Row 4 twenty Okloconee ( late) and all doing real well

One year update

In the vinyard, pulled up 1 whole row of grapes and planted Black Satin blackberry
Row 2 this spring, inserted lots of Black Satin sprouts from original planted area
Row 3, 50 Chester (late) black berry and 1 trial Tayberry plant
Row 4, will remove ladt grapes and Muscadines and plant Dorma trailing Raspberry, with 2 Black Butte blackberry trials

Lost a couple of apple trees to fire blight,
Now have a Beavans Favorite did so well that I ordered a replacement for a buckhorn
Also have a Brurfords red flesh on order

Started Pomegranit orchard hilled in beds, another dwarf Kieffer pear and one oriental pear
Shopping for a Korean (olympic) Giant pear and asian Persimons

Adding Kiwi, including a red one,

Now have 9 topbar bee hives as well
 
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