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How Long Do Blackberry Bushes Live

How Long Do Blackberry Bushes Live

How Long Do Blackberry Bushes Live

Blackberry bushes live for many years if given proper care. Blackberry bushes live and produce fruit for about 15 to 20 years. After that, the canes of blackberry will die and you have to prune them off to make way for new growth. If left untreated, the plant will eventually die off.

After the first year of planting, blackberry bush needs to be pruned every year, cutting back the dead stems (the ones two years old and producing fruit). Some blackberry bushes may fruit from the first-year canes (primocanes), but most do not fruit until 1-2 years after planting. Blackberry bushes do not need much pruning the first year after planting, as all canes are alive and ready to bear fruit in the following year. In the fall, you can continue cutting down the ones that are producing berries, to the ground, so that the plant can concentrate on the new sprouts that will be producing fruit for you next year.

Your first few canes will only grow leaves the first year, and then they will flower and produce fruit in their second year. To perform pruning, trim the second-year canes after you have harvested the fruits off of them during the late summer or early fall. Be careful not to cut new, unfruiting canes, since those will have to be braced for the following years harvest. Some types will produce a small crop of autumn fruit the first year, but larger crops will be harvested from the 2-year-old canes during the summer.

For most raspberries and blackberries, fruit grows only on the canes during the second year (last) of their lives. Often called acaneberriesa, raspberries and blackberries grow fruit on the vines of a plants crown — the section of the plant directly above ground, where roots below the soil meet canes above it. Raspberries also propagate from roots and produce canes, but blackberries only grow their canes from the crown. Blackberries produce new green stems each year, known as primacanes, and the new green stems usually bear leaves, but no flowers, in a plant known as the fruiting plant of a flowering plant.

Learn how to grow Blackberries in a container

Blackberries are a perennial plant, coming back from year to year, so it makes real sense to grow your own, if possible. Blackberries are famous for growing in the shade, and in fact, they are one of the only fruits to actually make a decent crop under these conditions. If you have got a fairly shaded area of your garden/allotment where no other fruits would grow, blackberries are worth trying. If you live close to a woods or another area where blackberries naturally grow you may not get a chance to enjoy these tasty berries as they tend to grow all over the place.

TypesShelf Life
Blackberry PlantFor 15 to 20 years
Blackberry Cane Start to decline after 2nd year.
How many years will a blackberry plant produce?

It is okay to plant your blackberries in an area that gets a little bit of shade, provided that it gets six to eight hours of direct sunlight per day. Find a clear area with direct sunlight, mix some organic fertilizer into the soil, then plant your blackberries. You will want to keep the soil around your blackberries moist during the first 2 or 3 weeks after planting. No matter which kind of blackberry you are growing, always remember to keep your soil moist all of the time.

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For raspberries and blackberries, the best practice is to adjust your soil prior to digging the planting holes. Although you should plant your blackberries in a wide-enough hole that you can fit roots into, you should not put your seeds too deeply in the ground. For blackberries that are planted with no roots, you should be able to get a clean line of soil over the stalk, and that is the proper depth for planting. When planning a place to grow a blackberry, keep in mind that a single plant of the vigorous varieties may spread out to be four meters or more when fully grown.

The key to growing blackberries on your own is to start with the domesticated, thornless varieties; these will be the easiest and most productive fruits you have ever grown. Unlike wild blackberries, the thornless varieties grow long, straight, vine-like branches called acanes. Because thornless blackberry bush canes thornless blackberry bush can grow very long, your plant would benefit from a little bit of support, especially if your canes are heavy with fruit.

Once your blackberry plant starts producing fruit, you will want to keep it protected from birds, particularly if it is a thornless variety. Thornless blackberry plants are among the easiest fruits to grow for a home crop, as they grow no thorns, which usually makes picking blackberries difficult. Blackberry bushes are low-maintenance, but in order to have a good fruit crop, it is important to take care of your blackberry plants by properly watering them and pruning them.

The root systems of blackberry plants are perennial (can survive for years), whereas the stems (aboveground stalks) are biennial (lives two years). Blackberry plants have a perennial root system with biennial canes, meaning that the root system can live for many years, whereas individual canes only live 2 years. A blackberry bush has one cane that lives one year, after which it produces fruit, at which point the plant dies.

Blackberry plants can spread from place to place very easily, especially if you leave some parts of the plant behind after picking berries. Blackberry bush can be planted at any time of the year, though it is best if it is planted mid-fall through early winter. At this time the soil will still have heat and in addition, rains during this time of the year will be enough to make sure that you can plant them and forget about them.

The easiest way to start growing your own blackberries is by purchasing a bare root or a young plant at the nursery and planting them in soil. According to NC State Extension, one bush blackberry bush can yield an abundant crop, with fruit yields up to 10 pounds per plant per year. The Mississippi State Extension supports this, suggesting a blackberry bush can yield up to 2.5 gallons of fruit per plant per year. Some other surveys have suggested as well that one bush of blackberries could produce as much as 3 gallons of blackberries per year.

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Once established, Apache Blackberry plants require no trellis or support from fences for growth; the bushes that produce fruit are extremely robust and grow upright. You can grow upright Blackberries without trellises, but trellises will reduce the windbreaks on your canes and will help to keep your canes tidy and easier to pick. A trellis keeps the tall, growing, upright plants from being knocked down by the wind or from falling down because of a heavy fruit load. Trailing types grow short, slender stems which will grow down along the ground if not supported by a suitable trellis.

How many years will a blackberry plant produce?

For 15 to 20 years, your blackberry plants can grow and bear fruit. Blackberry canes will start to decline after the second year of fruit production, and you should then cut them back to make room for fresh growth. When a cane dies, it will become brown, making it easy to identify which ones need to be pruned.

Why is my blackberry plant dying?

Root rot of blackberry vines is caused by the Armillaria fungi and can cause the blackberry canes to wilt and die. If your blackberry plant is infected, you will notice its roots have string-like, branched pieces that grow through the soil. There is a chance that the branched roots may infect healthy roots of plants nearby.

How long do blackberry bushes live?

Blackberry bushes have a unique growing process. The plant has a perennial root system and plant base, with the canes being biennial, and dying after the fruiting process. Blackberry plants tend to have a lifespan of 15 to 40 years and beyond, depending on the presence of pests or environmental conditions.