There’s something wonderful about going out into your garden and picking sweet and juicy berries. If you’re a fan of making jams, jellies, desserts, and salads then you should be growing your own berries.
I remember as a kid in Florida going into the woods behind our house (which unfortunately in my teens became a housing development) and picking blackberries and bringing them home. Mom would cover them in sugar and milk for breakfast or a snack, it was always such a treat.
Today, we’ll be showing you how you can grow your own berry patch so you can enjoy succulent fruits at any time. Let’s get started!
Choose Varieties With A Big Chance of Thriving in Your Garden
Berries aren’t difficult to grow but if it’s your first time growing a berry patch, it’s best to pick varieties that are well-suited for your area. You can ask your local plant nursery or garden shop to help you find varieties that work best for your local area.
Determine as well whether the variety of plants you want to grow are self-pollinating or requires cross-pollination. For example, blueberries need well-pollinated areas to yield a lot of fruit.
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Find the Best Spot In Your Garden for Growing Berries
Some berry plants are big and need a lot of room to grow to yield a lot of fruit for you. Choose a wide enough location where plants can happily spread without making your patch looking unruly.
Make sure as well that your garden has good air circulation to increase fruit yield. You can install trellises and fences where berries can climb and enjoy air circulation.
A lot of berry varieties like blackberries enjoy full sun. Plant them in the sunniest spot in your garden and you can enjoy a substantial harvest every summer.
Know When to Plant Berries
You can plant blueberries, cranberries, and currants and have berries all year round. Additionally, planting more plants in your garden can increase cross-pollination and result in a bigger yield come harvest time.
Raspberries, boysenberries, blackberries, and gooseberries can be planted in winter or in the spring. By summer, you’ll have a plethora of berries to fill your kitchen.
Nourish Your Berries
A successful berry patch requires plenty of compost, fertilizers, and organic material. When starting out, it’s important to remove the existing topsoil and amend it with compost or manure.
When your plants are established, apply compost to the beds once or twice a year at regular intervals. Apply healthy layers of mulch as well to keep weeds and pests away and help keep the soil from drying out.
Try our Mulch Calculator to determine how much mulch you’ll need for any area:
Prune Them Right
Different berries require different pruning strategies. Blueberries and blackberries, for example, need to be pruned in late summer in autumn after fruiting.
Raspberries need to be pruned in the winter to remove old wood. Since they fruit the second year around, be sure to keep 6 to 8 of the new season’s canes for next year.
Gooseberries need to be pruned in the winter as well to thin out excess branches. Currants need to be pruned after harvest in the summer.
Meanwhile, cranberries don’t need to be pruned much since they grow closer to the ground. You can thin them out to maintain their size, however.
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Keep Wild Berries Away
Keep your berry patch safe from diseases and infections by maintaining a good distance from any existing wild berry and bramble patches in your area.
Typically, you should grow your berry patch at least 50 feet away from any wild plants to keep them healthy. You can also eliminate wild growth to protect your berries from contamination.
Berries are not difficult to grow and there are so many varieties you can enjoy in your own garden. berries aren’t cheap at the store and they don’t taste anywhere near as good as the ones you can grow yourself. So, choose a great place and get your very own berry patch started with the info provided above.
Do you already have a berry patch? Share your insights and tips with us in the comments below.
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