Prepare Blackberry Bushes For Winter: Overwinter Blackberries

Black Section Separator

Fall garden clean-up is underway, and blackberry bushes in all zones should be prepared for winter. Organic farmer Jenna Rich shows you 8 simple ways to winterize your blackberry vines.  

All fruit plants and trees. Winterize blackberries after fruiting. Compost rotting, sick, or damaged fruit. Yellowjackets and rats prefer falling fruit, which gardeners hate. Swarms of stinging bugs will pose serious issues with enough dropped fruit. 

1. Remove Fallen Fruit

Winter pruning feeds blackberries. Otherwise, gradually distribute it, saving the last feed for autumn cleanup. One in spring when your bushes wake up, two during the growing season, and one in early or late autumn.   

2. Soil Test and Fertilize

Blackberry bushes are shallow-rooted, thus weeds are major rivals. If your shrubs are new, winter preparation must include weeding. Mulched walkways and compost after cultivation should reduce weed pressure.   

3. Control Those Weed

Healthy, plump, and juicy fruits need one to two inches of watering per week during the season and up to four inches during ripening. Maintain your plants after fruiting. For a lovely winter, water them until the ground freezes.   

4. Don’t Forget to Water! 

Hopefully, you chose blackberries for your zone. Winterizing your bushes depends on the variety. Some can endure low temperatures without much care, while others need plenty of care.   

5. Protect from Snow and Ice

0-10° is fine for most delicate blackberry bushes. If you reside somewhere with harsh winters and temps below 0°, choose a cold-hardy variety. The second most important winter preparation for berry bushes is mulching.   

6. Mulch

Blackberry pruning varies by type. Some need be cut in summer, others dormant. Pruning improves fruit yields and quality and simplifies harvesting.  

7. Prune

Blackberries aren't merely tasty for humans. Birds, mice, voles, and deer may visit your shrubs. Deer may chew the foliage to the stub!   

8. Protect from Critter

12 Different Types of Blueberries For Your Garden 

Also See

Also See