Saturday, June 14, 2014

Boysenberries 2015

Thornless Boysenberry
Harvest of the Thornless boysenberries is complete.  Now it's time to get ready for the 2015 season.  Berries develop on the growth from this summer; so the canes that bore fruit in 2014 need to be removed.  I removed the bird netting then Farmer MacGregor got into the overgrown thicket and cut those canes to the ground.  He also removed any canes with thorns. So much for "thornless". Discarded canes should be burned; but the San Joaquin Valley has very limited times when you can burn.  So into the green waste can they go. That leaves canes that started sprouting this year.  From those, we select 5 canes on each of the 6 plants to be tied to the supports.  Think of fingers on your hand fanning out.

2015 Producing Canes
It's not a perfect science, but it helps to keep this part of the garden tidy.  Berries can really get away from you. If you're not careful, your berry patch will look more like a brier patch from Song of the South.  Any other canes that sprout are removed.  This is something that should be done at least once a week here.  We have found something that thrives in this spot of the garden.

2015 Thornless Boysenberry Patch
As these canes grow, they will be tied to the supports until they reach the top.  At that point, they will be pruned to keep at a manageable height.  Laterals will form and those will get tied up too.  Everything should stay within the support frame.  At least, that's the goal.  The berries will continue to be fertilized and irrigated throughout the summer.  Soil amendment is next on the "to do" list.

Now it's time to enjoy the harvest.


Sue said...

I always have intentions on getting them properly pruned and tied up, but never do.
Yours look so tidy! Good advice

dorothy said...

It seems like a lot of work, but it will be worth it just to be able to pick your own fresh berries. I hope you are enjoying some pleasant weather. Our temps have been in the low 90's, which is tolerable for me. Triple digits, not so much!


*Sue - like most tasks, it's easier to take care of it a little at a time rather than let it overwhelm you. Plus, putting the plant energy into producing more berries is my selfishness.

*Dorothy - you're right. It is worth it. The weather is what it is. Thank goodness for AC. Looking forward to an improved water year.

daisy g said...

Mmmmmmmmmmmm, fresh berries! Just think of all the possibilities!

David said...

Maybelline, my berry of choice is the dreaded mulberry here in Nebraska. I say dreaded because every year the fence lines have to be tidied up because, well, the birds love them too and, well, they will relieve themselves while sitting on the fence. Mulberry seeds with fertilizer from natures way of planting is a sure fire way to get a Mulberry tree started. The fruit from a Mulberry tree is very similar to a blackberry or boysenberry. I'm learning to tolerate Mulberry trees which is an improvement from hate. I still hate them in the fence line though. The Mulberries were just starting to ripen when I left on vacation last week and I haven't been out in the backyard to see what's left of the berries since I returned yesterday. They do have a nice sweet taste to them and my intension every year is to use them for jelly or jam but it seems that June is always a busy month and it never happens.

Have a great berry enjoying day.