The Q&A Archives: Tending Wild Blackberries

Question: I have a wild blackberry patch which I am trying to cultivate. I weed (as much as possible) and cut out old canes. I also heavily mulch with chopped leaves and grass clippings in the fall. The berries seem to be smaller now than they were when they grew in a "tangled mess". Some of the berries also seem to have "dried up" before they matured. Is there something else I should be doing?

Answer: Small berries and dried up berries tell me that pollination was not effective this year. If it rained a lot during bloom, that would have kept pollinators inside out of the wet. I'd hate to think that these plants are just being contrary, and would rather be left to grow willy-nilly, instead of enjoying all that wonderful TLC you're giving them! If you really want to invest in this berry patch, it's time to start your own beehive!

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