Mar 14, 2011

How to prune a blackberry patch gone WILD...

If you live in NE Oklahoma and have a good piece of property, you most likely have a few wild Blackberry bushes!  We have one pretty big patch of them, but...how, when and why do we weed and prune them?  Keep reading...

The reason for pruning our patch was for ease of gathering and to produce more berries (since we have some friends that like to come over and pig out on them too ;)!  If you don't prune them, this is what happens...
Yep, it gets all overgrown with weeds and the bushes themselves go WILD!  The best time to prune them is late winter/early spring.  This is the first time I've ever pruned Blackberries before, so I'll update in the Summer to see how the production is going.  If you're getting the proper amount of rain, don't even worry about watering or fertilizing them.

Where do you start on such an overwhelming task as this?  I just start out by picking a spot, sized to my liking in the patch and kinda "eyeball" the parimeters.  I call these little spots in the patch "mini-patches", separated by skinny walkways that run in and out of the patch.

As you can imagine, it's super fun crawling through thorns, NOT!  Make sure you wear thick leather gloves and jeans!

Here's what the front of the Blackberry patch looks like after I pruned it...
First "mini-patch"
So, that's what I've been doing every Sunday and Monday for the past 3 weeks...and believe me, it is NOT an easy job!  Be careful not to cut down live Blackberry vines, even if they look dead...they're probably just dormant.

Thanks for reading and I hope this helps someone!

-Hannah

This post was shared on Barn Hop #4