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Growing Blackberries

Growing Blackberries

Triple Crown Thornless



Vigorous, fruiting shrubs hardy to zone 5. Thornless types make harvesting easy without gloves or protective clothing. Fruit is excellent for eating fresh and in jams, jellies, desserts, and wine. Self-pollinating, so plants do not require multiple varieties to set fruit. Often grown on a trellis or with support.

How To Plant

Keep in a cool spot out of direct sunlight until ready to plant and ensure roots remain moist. Can wrap roots in moist newspaper or paper towels or soak in water for 2 to 4 hours to hydrate before planting. Plant outdoors in spring 4 to 8 weeks before the last frost. Prepare a hole 12 inches deep and wide enough to fit the roots without bending. Add compost or other organic matter and mix well. Trim off damaged or broken roots, and spread roots out evenly. Fill hole with amended soil, covering roots with an inch or two of soil.


Plant in well-drained soil in full sun. Prefers moist soils with good organic matter content, but is suitable for any well-drained soil. Blackberries fruit on two year canes, and annual pruning is needed for good yields. Prune second year canes to 3 to 4 feet tall, and cut side branches back to 12 inches. After fruiting, remove all stems that produced fruit. In second winter, remove any weak shoots and prune second year shoots as above. Thornless types tend to sprawl along the ground for the first few years after planting. They are usually tied to a trellis to keep them upright and make harvesting easier.

Fertilizer Recommendations

Use Jung's Raspberry Jump Start Fertilizer 20-21-20 (51029), Gromax Fertilizer Tablets 20-10-5 (51165), or Neptune Fish & Seaweed Fertilizer 2-3-1 (51221).

Common Problems

Easy-to-grow and usually problem-free. Aphids, Japanese beetle, rose chafer, and borers sometimes attack plants.

Alternative Products

Raspberry is a related fruiting shrub. Currant and Gooseberry are alternative fruiting shrubs.

Complimentary Products

Moderate feeders, plants benefit from annual fertilization. Less commonly-grown fruiting shrubs include Canadian Haskap and Leikora Sea Berry / Sea Buckthorn (30439).

Product Recommendations

Bird-X Netting can be used to protect fruit from birds. 

Blackberry Facts

Blackberry fruit contains high levels of healthy antioxidants and its leaves can be used to make herbal tea.


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