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Blackberries are the fruit of many Rubus species grouped together as the Rubus fruticosus species aggregateW, sometimes commonly referred to as "brambles" or "canefruit" (including raspberries).
- 1 Taxonomy
- 2 Varieties
- 3 Common names
- 4 Etymology
- 5 Range
- 6 History
- 7 Morphology
- 8 Behaviour
- 9 Reproduction
- 10 Hardiness
- 11 Soil Type
- 12 Soil pH
- 13 Shade Preference
- 14 Shade Tolerance
- 15 Aspect
- 16 Exposure
- 17 Propagation
- 18 Maintenance
- 19 Watering
- 20 Pruning
- 21 Problems
- 22 Harvest
- 23 Preservation
- 24 Uses
- 25 Nutritional Values
- 26 Cooking
- 27 References
In the wild, it "moves" by putting down new roots where its arching shoots touch the ground.
Ideal is pH 7.
Prefer a sheltered site.
From Seed: Seed requires warm and cold stratification (see Seed StratificationW). E.g. keep seed in a box of sand at warm room temperature for 3 months, then store at 4°c (40°F) for a further 3 months.
Hardwood cuttings: take in winter.
Plant cuttings, layers, roots or seedlings in late autumn or early spring.
Plant potted or bare-rooted new plants in winter.
Allow 1.8m (6ft) between plants.
Fruiting occurs on stems which are in their second year. Generally idea of pruning blackberry is therefore to remove the canes which have just fruited in the last growing season. This pruning is best done in winter when the plant is dormant. Exceptions to the above are "Himalaya" and "Evergreen" varieties which can fruit for several years on the same wood, so should not be pruned hard.
When harvesting blackberries, watch out for chiggers (also known as berry bugs, see TrombiculidaeW). These are small mites that can cause rashes and itchiness when they bite.
Fresh fruits do not store for long.
- Fruit is edible raw, or cooked. Can be made into jams, cobblers, pies, etc.
- Fruit can be made into wine (see Blackberry wine recepie: Making fruit, vegetable and flower wines#Berry Wines).
- Bee plant.
- Young shoots (when spines are still soft) can be cooked.
- Leaves can be used to make tea.
- Purple dye from fruit and shoots.
- Basket weaving (spines can be removed by pulling stems through a small hole).
- Crawford, M (2016). Creating a Forest Garden: working with nature to grow edible crops. Green Books. ISBN 9781900322621.
- Seymour, M (2014). The New Self-Sufficient Gardener: The complete illustrated guide to planning, growing, storing and preserving your own garden produce. Dorling Kindersley. ISBN 9781409346784.