Wednesday, October 19, 2011

(White) Blackberry Dreams

Long time readers of this blog will remember my ramblings last fall on the history of Burbank's White Blackberry, and also recall my quest to find a surviving specimen of this once world-famous wonder.

Well, I'm pleased to show you that, thanks to a generous benefactor, Burbank's White Blackberry now grows in my garden.  Last fall, I received 6 cane runners in the mail and needless to say, I treated them like gold.  Hedging my bets, I planted the two strongest canes outside in the main garden, put two weaker ones in another more protected spot, and tried growing the remaining two in a sunny window through the winter.  Only the two that were strongest survived, but those two are one more that I needed to get the strain going here.  I can taste those delicious berries already, even though the floracanes won't be mature till next year. 

They already look different than my other blackberries.  Pictured in September at the top right, and early this spring at the lower left, they are healthy, but still look different.   They are shorter than my non-thorny cultivars, a lighter green and a bit less glossy on the leaf surface.  But most of all, the canes, in cross section, are star-shaped rather than round.  Odd, but who knows what the actual breeding of this darling entailed?  Luther Burbank was always bit lax on public disclosure of his methods.

The kind gentleman who provided the rooted cuttings must remain anonymous because I don't want him deluged.  Deluged, that is, by the hundreds of requests that I anticipate will come from all over next summer when I show you my fabulous white berries.  But I will, here and ever after, acknowledge my debt to his generosity and say Thank You, in public.  They survived my meager care, buddy, and now grow again in the Flint Hills.

5 comments:

  1. What has happened to the White BB? over 2012 ?
    Photos?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I didn't see much in the way of fruit from these small plants, a sparse one or two, not even enough to taste, but they grew well this year, standing now four foot tall and as wide. Next year I should see if the dream of white blackberries matches the reality.

      Delete
  2. How did these come out? I would love to buy some plants from you.

    ReplyDelete
  3. Will there some seeds this year, too? I'm from Germany and it would be to difficult to import runners. So you make me very happy if you could produce some seeds.

    ReplyDelete

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