Created by Napa farmer Rudolf Boysen during the 1920s, the boysenberry is a unique cross between the European raspberry, common blackberry, and loganberry. Needless to say, we are excited to still be cultivating this Napa creation in the city in which it originated. During the summer, we offer fresh boysenberries that can be purchased directly from the farm at our Napa location as well as at several farmer's markets throughout the North Bay. We are also happy to offer home gardeners the opportunities to grow these unique brambles as well by making plants available during the winter and spring(if supplies last). Plants can be purchased at our Napa location.
Boysenberry Care and Culture
In terms of growing habits, boysenberries have picked up more traits from the blackberry than the raspberry. With a little bit of forethought and some seasonal care through out the year, home gardeners can easily have boysenberries in their own gardens.
Selecting a Site
- Boysenberries require sites with full sun exposure and well-drained soil are essential.
- Planting boysenberries in rows, rather than hills, makes them an easily managed addition to the home garden. Rows that are 36" wide with a 36" aisle between the rows will maximize space but still allow enough room to work between the rows.
- Like many varieties of blackberries, boysenberries cannot support their own weight making a trellis system a necessary undertaking(the top wire of the system should be 60 to 79 inches above the ground).
For the best results, only transplant boysenberries while they are dormant during the winter and early spring. To avoid stressing the plants, try transplanting them during the early evening hours or on an overcast day.
1. To transplant, dig a hole 1 foot wide by 1 foot deep and place a hand full of compost or manure in the bottom.
2. Place the boysenberry plant in the hole and backfill with soil such that the soil level of the plant is even with the level with the ground.
3. Plant additional plants to stand 3 to 4 feet apart.
4. Water each plant thoroughly.
Tips for Boysenberries
Like the majority of cultivated blackberries, boysenberries are also considered floricane-fruiting, meaning that they only produce fruit on floricanes, or canes that grew during the previous year's summer. Primocanes, or the canes that were produced this year, will not produce any fruit until next summer. This means that during the growing season, two different ages classes of growth will be present which can make pruning a little complicated. With a little patience and practice though, it will become second nature in no time.
To prune floricane-fruiting boysenberries ...