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Best black raspberry

Posted by glenn_russell 6b, RI (My Page) on
Tue, Jul 6, 10 at 20:38

Hi All-
As I consider replacing some of my raspberries, I think I may want to add another black raspberry. I currently have Jewel, which I like. The berry are good size, and good tasting. But, they are very thorny, the birds like 'em more than the reds/yellows, and my biggest complaint is that they're difficult to separate from the stem, even when they are ripe. My question is... are other blacks easier to separate? I admit that sometimes I'll pick them at 95% black/ripe because I'm afraid of loosing them to the birds. But even the occasional 100% ripe berry still doesn't want to separate, and I usually get the stem coming with the berry. I picked a Bristol the other day at the local nursery, and it seemed to come off fine. Do other blacks separate better than Jewel? Favorites? -Glenn


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: Best black raspberry

Sometimes there is a condition where the blackcap will only moosh off the stem, but I have never had a normal ripe Jewel blackcap come off stubbornly. I've never had a stem come off with the berry.

Try bagging a cluster or two (anti-birds) and letting them go and see if they eventually pluck easier. There is a phase with nearly all caneberries where the berry hangs before dropping. You don't have to resort to that extreme, but even a slightly loose berry is obvious. If your Jewels do not go through that phase, it is strange.


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RE: Best black raspberry

Ok, good info Larry. Thanks!
-Glenn


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RE: Best black raspberry

I have a few Jewel plants. They do tend to crack a few of the drupelets off. They leaving them behind and do not release from receptacle. I see this happen a fourth of the time to my Jewel berries.

The old varieties like John Robertson, Bristol & Mac Black that I have never have this problem of breaking off drupelets. They pull off clean. But I do get too aggressive, sometimes I pick an under ripe berry and it breaks the stem leaving the caylx & receptacle attached. Most years, it is only a dozen or so this happens to. To get the stem off after the stem breaks, I carefully bite the tip of the stem and pull the berry off.

I found that I get more (pints of) berries off the older varieties than Jewel. The biggest drawback is for the first four days of picking, the berries are small on the older varieties. After day four, they swell up bigger. No matter how much I water them it does not help this problem. I do like Mac Black since the never start out small & extend the berry season.
Thorns, yes they have all have lots of thorns. I'm still looking for purple raspberries called Glencoe from SCRI to be available in the states. Glencoe is spine free canes. I would love to try them.


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think you might have one of the best ones jewel, i grow all my black raspberries in a polytunnel in the uk, jewel is the biggest and ok flavour, i also have bristol and cumberland, berries are smaller and again taste is ok, i have grown out a few of my own black raspberry experiments 1 plant of which is very promising, ive named voodoo, which is a tiny bit bigger than jewel and good flavoured, ill send you some pics glenn via email,
the glen coe thats metioned is really good, again ill send pics gleen and you can post them up, stew


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RE: Best black raspberry

nHardy-
It's good to hear that someone else has a problem with Jewel sticking to the receptacle, and that other varieties are might be better here. I wonder where we could find GlenCoe? I'm not overly impressed with the flavor of my purple Royalty's... They're not bad, but certainly not up to an Anne, Caroline, Prelude or Jewel.

Hi Swaine-
Thanks for the below pics! It's good to know that I have one of the good varieties. Thanks for the input! -Glenn

"Voodoo"
2010-07-07 voodoo black raspberry

"Glen Coe"
2010-07-07 glen coe


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RE: Best black raspberry

I have also found my Bristol a bit easier to get off than the Jewels, but not overly so. I have found them to be pretty similar in taste; the Jewels are supposed to be bigger but for me the Bristol are bigger, possibly due to location or age of plants.

I agree on your Royalty blahs, mine were pulled several years ago.

Scott


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RE: Best black raspberry

  • Posted by olpea zone 6 KS (My Page) on
    Wed, Jul 7, 10 at 22:18

I only have experience with Jewel, but haven't had any problem getting them off the canes. Mine have always pull right off.

This year the birds got most of them. Sorry Glenn, but I shed no tears for the egg flavored fruit.


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RE: Best black raspberry

Old thread but this came up in another thread. GlenCoe is now available here too. I have to pick one of those up!
A new player is around now Niwot! The primocane fruit is bigger than Jewel, but the floricane is smaller.
I'll have a taste probably next year. Only one good size primocane. A few canes growing, here is a photo of the plant, it was windy.
The tomato cage was to keep the dog from stepping on it, and well me too! I stepped on my Thimberry-raspberry hybrid. I knocked off the only cane too! It is growing another. I should remove the cage now, it's big enough.


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RE: Best black raspberry

I probably have a week at most left on my Jewel black raspberries but the primocanes are a lot larger this year. After summer topping them a couple of weeks ago, the lateral branches are shooting in every direction. I think I mentioned in another post that I wasn't that thrilled with the Jewel flavor but it may improve in the second year.

The single, potted Blackhawk black raspberry that I neglected since last year actually had a better tasting berry, but it too had pretty small berries this year. Since it potted in a smaller container, the new canes are not as large or vigorous.

I have a Mac Black bed planted and although not as vigorous as Jewel, the berries look to be larger. This variety is a good 2 weeks behind Jewel in my climate.

I have Royalty purple raspberry starting to ripen and plan on making my first batch of jam / jelly with those. They are better for processing than fresh eating.

Finally, I picked up 4 Glencoe purple raspberries earlier this year before everyone ran out of it, but these are only about 8-12" tall now because they arrived as a tissue culture 2" pot. I'm still trying to figure where to plant them.

Drew51 - Let me know how your Allen black raspberries taste.


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RE: Best black raspberry

I added Jewell this year, it was a replacement, last year it never took. Anyway, the floricane has a few berries, as I will be able to compare taste to Allen. Neither is ripe yet.


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My Niwot's are my first "purchased" black raspberry and look forward to a fall bearing variety. All my life though I have enjoyed wild blackcaps as they grow everywhere. Is there REALLY a difference in taste or productivity between these Named varieties?? Can you tell the difference between a bowl of Jewel or Allen berries (or wild berries for that matter) in taste or appearance??

For me I think location is the biggest factor. The same wild plant grown on my property is nowhere near as productive in growth or berry size as the same one grown at my fathers 10 minutes away. There the canes grow huge sometimes up to an inch thick, 10' long and loaded with large juicy berries... especially when partially shaded. He has much better soil than I do though.

Is it more just disease resistance that these named ones benefit from?

Tyler


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RE: Best black raspberry

  • Posted by Drew51 5b/6a SE MI (My Page) on
    Fri, Jun 20, 14 at 11:48

With blacks I doubt you will have much difference. Here the wild blacks are very small. When I saw yours I was surprised at the size! I think the domestic might produce more. My Allen first floricanes (ever) have over 400 berries. The primocanes look three times as large now. I expect a 1000 berries off one plant next year. Well maybe not that many, but well over 400. I get about 300 off the reds. I never really counted them though. I always stopped at about 150, as so many it was silly!
If you get 400 off a plant then their is little difference.


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I like jewel for both vigor and flavor, but man do i hate the the prickles.


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Drew do you prune to force laterals to increase productivity??


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  • Posted by Drew51 5b/6a SE MI (My Page) on
    Fri, Jun 20, 14 at 16:33

"Drew do you prune to force laterals to increase productivity?? "

Yes, but have yet to do it this year. I should, it's just surrounded by floricanes, my patch is almost wild. Thank goodness it's in a raised bed, all that restricts it. Berries are starting to turn color, it will not be long.
When I head a primocane it does produce multiple laterals. But it's such a thicket, some berries may go unpicked as I can't see or find them. When I move I will have the patch by itself so I can mange it better. I have other raised beds attached, and it looks great, but hard to manage. Here is one lateral of about 4 on one cane of about 4 canes.


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  • Posted by Drew51 5b/6a SE MI (My Page) on
    Fri, Jun 20, 14 at 16:44

The plant is so dense, it's hard to know what is what!
 photo 002-8.jpg

To the left are the new primocanes at about 6 feet.
 photo 003-6.jpg

This post was edited by Drew51 on Sun, Jun 22, 14 at 8:08


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Drew, those Jewels look incredible! How high do you let them get before you top them?


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  • Posted by Drew51 5b/6a SE MI (My Page) on
    Sun, Jun 22, 14 at 8:12

That is an Allen black raspberry. Sorry for not being clear. I would like to cut them now! But I think I'm going to wait till I harvest floricanes. That way new laterals will have room to grow. The berries should be ripe in about 2 weeks.


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Drew51,

When you summer top your Allen's at that height, you will probably have to tie them to your trellis wire or they may just fall over since the lateral branches tend to sprout from the top of the cane, making it pretty top heavy. That's especially true when you add fruit to them next year.


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RE: Best black raspberry

  • Posted by Drew51 5b/6a SE MI (My Page) on
    Sun, Jun 22, 14 at 9:08

Yeah last year I noticed it was the laterals that tip rooted. Yes, I'll tie them up. Hopefully I have room to work. I need to remove some of the canes no doubt.
The berries are turning red. Prelude, and Himbo Top already had ripe berries, beat the blacks!
I can't wait till the floricane finish fruiting so I can see better, and remove the weak primocanes and such, make some room in there!


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I just cleaned out my Jewel black raspberries today. They seem to be growing OK, but I hope the larger primocanes this year result in better quality fruit next year.


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Drew51,

Had a couple of my Royalty Purple raspberries today and they taste better than I recall last year. The berries are also a lot bigger than the average raspberry and probably 4-5 times the size of a black raspberry. Last year I only had a couple since they popped out on the cane handles after planting. Since I have bird netting over them this year, I'm planning on making some jelly or jam with them which will be a first for me.

The Cascade Delight red raspberries are a couple of days away from fruiting too. This will be a 'baby' crop but the berries are huge for a raspberry. I saw one extra large berry this morning that had to be close to 10 grams. I'm still waiting for a ripe one to try though.


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Sorry, my misunderstanding - they certainly look vigorous! I'm jealous of you already having berries ripe - my jewels and bristols are only finishing up their flowering now, so it'll still be a few weeks for me to have them; my fall golds were first to bloom, so they might be first.

Speaking of summer topping, I just pruned one of my glencoes; it had already been lateral branching before that, if you can believe it, though not near the top, just 2/3 of the way up.


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RE: Best black raspberry

  • Posted by Drew51 5b/6a SE MI (My Page) on
    Sun, Jun 22, 14 at 22:12

JT,

Cool about Royalty! I had one delivered as a replacement. After hearing bad reports I didn't want it, but I can't get myself to kill a healthy plant, so I planted it.
Small at present, but glad I did now!

JS,

I want one of those Glencoe's too. I have to find a spot for it. Sounds like a winner from others, and it's difficult to get those UK types here, only the best end up here, so it must be good.

Usually one wants to maximize production, but with so many canes I have been looking at limiting production. I really need more room!

I really like Fall Gold, it's a cool cultivar, it makes great jam!

Hey on jam, if you use lemon juice (2-4 tsp), some lemon zest (.5-1 tsp), and grate some apple in the batch (1/3-1/2 apple), you can use less sugar. If you never made jam, often the instructions tell you not to limit sugar Well you can reduce sugar, but sometimes it does not gel. If that happens just heat it up again add more sugar, more pectin.
A product called Pomona uses calcium, and the amount of sugar does not matter.You don't have to use any! It makes it slightly cloudy, calcium is used to gel. It works well. But I have got low sugar raspberry jam to gel. Even if a light gel, I do not like jam with loads of sugar. I use 1 cup at the most to 2 cups prepared fruit. Also you can buy a strainer fine enough to remove seeds if desired. I use a pistil to force raspberries through strainer. First though add 1/4 cup water, fruit, heat up but do not boil, crush fruit with potato masher, then strain fruit.

Also a good jam is kiwi-blackberry, yum! Put kiwi in blender. Strain seeds out of blackberries. Same way as raspberries, heat, mash, strain. \
At this point follow recipe. The secret to getting a good gel is boiling it properly. This takes practice. The more you boil it, the more you break down the good stuff, so a hard boil from 5- 15 minutes, no longer, unless you need to, but at this point the jam is losing nutrition. The more you make the better you get at it. Keep it stirred not to scorch!
A little secret if it doesn't want to gel, add a touch more sugar, this at times forces a gel.
Use cold spoon to test, dip it in, and see if it gels, it is hard to get right.
Check many recipes online
Often when boiling, the fruit starts to look oily, it is starting to gel, it needs 3 or so more minutes, and it should be good.
Since you have to add some sugar, using just ripe berries is best. Not over ripe, just ripe is best.

Raspberries have a lot of pectin, strawberries do not. I made strawberry jam today. I used the Pomona product so I could limit sugar. I used 1/2 cup.Came out great!
I also blended it before making, I don't like chunks.


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RE: Best black raspberry

Drew51 - Thank you for the advice on jam! I'm going to try to make some this week.

The Royalty purple raspberries are large plants with large (for a raspberry) berries. The berries have a mild flavor with a black raspberry-like after taste. They are also very productive.


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  • Posted by Drew51 5b/6a SE MI (My Page) on
    Mon, Jun 23, 14 at 8:33

I kept himbo top around, as that cultivator is very productive. taste was just OK, but like Royalty they tasted better this year. A fall bearing and I kept one cane overwinter of 4 plants, and it was the very first to ripen, beating Prelude even. Glad I did it is turning into a good cultivar. Better than last year, and really throws out the berries. More are ripe today.


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Drew - Thanks for the jam info too! I think this will be a good year for me to try it out, as I'm expecting quite a few pounds of red raspberries.

I had some of my coworker's royalty berries last year- they were a little underwhelming to me but this will be my first year with my own royalties - I'm hoping they'll taste a little different. If nothing else, I'll have tons of them for pies / jam - I have an amazing number of flowers on it now!

I'm jealous of both anyone with berries already ripe - we get a late start to the growing season in Maine - my first raspberry flowers didn't open until June 7th this year.


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Drew, do you remove seeds from your raspberries? I have a food mill with a berry seed filter and I might try that on some jam or sorbet from my Bristols I just harvested.

BTW if you have lots of fruit its worth thinking about getting an ice cream maker, you can make some out of this world sorbets with a lot less work than making jam.

Scott


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RE: Best black raspberry

  • Posted by Drew51 5b/6a SE MI (My Page) on
    Mon, Jun 23, 14 at 11:35

Yes, making ice cream would work for me, thanks for the tip. I also have a food mill but use it for tomatoes mostly. I have a simple strainer for berries. I could use the mile too, probably is better. The strainer removes pulp too, which I like to keep. I actually never used the food mill yet, it is new. Most places sell strainers fine enough to capture seeds, Yes, I do remove seeds. They are really good for you. Raspberries seeds have a chemical known to suppress cancer tumors, If the jam was for me alone I would leave them, but I give most of it away.
I guess I eat the most strawberries and raspberries with greek yogart. Nuts work too! So good!


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