Last week I received a “sweet” package in the mail. With names like Peach Sorbet and Raspberry Shortcake, you’d think that I had a secret admirer with a sweet tooth. As much as I appreciate a good dessert, these gifts were plants from Fall Creek Farms in Oregon. Both are patented varieties of a blueberry and raspberry plant, targeted to home gardeners with little space and minimal skill. Even though I write about gardening, I don’t consider myself a gardening expert, but I’m always willing to try something new. A couple months ago I had a nice conversation with a garden-focused PR firm, Garden Media Group, and they mentioned that they would like me to participate in a trial so that I would hopefully write about my results for the SF Chronicle. I had forgotten about it until my package arrived.
Raspberry Shortcake is the wholesaler’s inaugural variety in their BrazelBerry collection. It’s a dwarf raspberry that maxes out at 36″. It’s perfect for patio containers, is thornless, and doesn’t need a pollinator. If planted in the fall, it would have produced fruit by now. But since I just now potted it, I’ll look forward to a crop next year.
plant in full, neutral soil, good drainage
fertilize in early spring and water moderately
Also, new canes will produce fruit in spring. Once fruiting is finished, prune out canes at the base that have fruited, leaving new canes to fruit next season.
Peach Sorbet is billed as a four season show stopper as it has beautiful foliage in the spring and fall in addition to lovely white flowers before setting fruit. In most mild climates it will keep its foliage year round and can turn deep eggplant in color. Many gardening books and landscapers have been jumping on the blueberry bandwagon and praising this plant for its ability to be a decorative hedge and produce amazing fruit. Edible gardening 2.0. All varieties in the BrazzleBerry collection are self-pollinating.
grows to a 2′ compact mound
requires full sun, acidic soil (incorporate peat moss or organic matter), good drainage
fertilize in early spring (acidic) and water moderately
Also, the plant produces new canes each spring and fruits on them. Once fruiting is complete, prune canes that have fruited leaving new canes to fruit next season. Annual pruning promotes plant growth and berry production.
Check the BrazzleBerries website for availability by entering your zip code in the “Where to Buy” field.