Pruning blackberries

I've been pruning the blackberries for the upcoming berry season. I'll try and put up some pics tomorrow, though I may not have any before pictures. Pruning thorned blackberries is pain enough to make you pull up the plants and start over with only thornless. Those thorned plants are lucky they have such big, delicious berries - larger berries than any of the thornless varieties.

I'm pruning the top of the plants to 3.5-4 feet and then pruning any lateral branches to 12-16 inches. I'm also cutting out any small sucker canes that came up. This is the first year than we've pruned this way. It should result in easier picking and larger berries. There may be less total berries than prior years, but probably less wasted berries hiding in a thicket of impenetrable brambles. We'll just have to see. In any case, it looks more ordered and more "farmlike."

We're very excited about the upcoming berry season. The blueberry plants are larger of course, so there will be even more blueberries. We've got another year under our belt of understanding how these plants grow. This should mean happier plants and more plentiful and healthy fruit.

The cabins are almost finished. There are a total of four cabins. I need to take some more pictures. Two of the cabins are finished, save a few more pieces of furniture. The other two still need to have their tile floor installed and then they'll need to be furnished. I realize that we're way behind the "early October" pronouncement in an earlier blog. Perhaps that date was a little unrealistic (thanks Dad!). In any case we think you'll be impressed when we're finished. Hopefully some of you berry pickers will come spend a whole weekend on the farm! We're really looking forward to our first cabin guests.