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Plant Manual for Tayberry

To the left, you'll find all the topics covered in this Plant Manual. Select a topic to read its information.

Plant Description

Prolific even in poor soil. A cross between loganberry and blackberry, with a strong, tart flavor that's ideal for jams, jellies and wine. Ripens late summer on 6-7' vines.

Acclimate

Plants grown in a greenhouse must be acclimated carefully before planting or placing them outdoors. This is especially true in hot or sunny locations. Many species should never be grown in full sun. Before purchasing a plant, learn about its sun requirements. Knowing the plants requirements can avoid any damage to the plant by incorrectly giving it the wrong conditions.

If your plant has been grown in a greenhouse, here are a few steps we recommend you follow:

  • After purchasing your plant, place it outside in a sheltered, shady spot or on your back porch.
  • Leave it there for 3-4 hours and gradually increase the time spent outside by 1-2 hours per day.
  • Bring the plants back indoors each night.
  • Water it regularly to keep the plant moist.
  • Occasionally spray the leaves with water.
  • After 2-3 days, move the plants from their shady spot into morning sun, returning them to the shade in the afternoon.
  • After 7 days, the plants should be able to handle the outdoor temperatures, if they stay around 50 degress F.
  • After 7-10 days, your plant is ready to be planted in its permanent location. Try to do this on a cloudy day and be sure to water the plant well.
  • Observe foliage daily. If any type of leaf discoloration occurs, put the plant back into filtered light and attempt this step at a later date.
  • Special care must be taken to avoid burning the leaves.

These are general guide recommendations. Some plants take longer than others to acclimate.

Location

The best way to succeed is to plan before you plant. Let’s discuss location: Do you know where you want to locate your new plant? Avoid many future problems by considering all aspects of the planting spot, such as:

  • Cross-pollination
  • Sun and good soil
  • Leave space for future planting

Cross-Pollination

Is a pollinator variety present? Cross-pollination by a different variety, of the same type of plant, is key to the success of many plants. In most cases, its absence is why the plant doesn’t bear fruit or produces poorly. Most berry plants are self-pollinating, but for a larger fruit and crop plant more than one variety.

Sun and Good Soil

Your plant would love a sunny place with well-drained, fertile soil. But it will be quite satisfied with six to eight hours of sunlight. Good drainage is required to keep your plant “happy.” If your soil has high clay content, use our Coco-Fiber Potting Medium or add one-third peat to the soil at planting time. We do not recommend planting in heavy, pure clay soils.

Even if your yard isn’t the most ideal location, take heart. Most berry plants are very adaptable and respond well to fertilizers, so they can get along well even where the soil is nutritionally poor. Just steer clear of sites with extremely heavy soils or very poor drainage.

Space for Future Plantings

Once you’ve found out about fruit growing goodness firsthand, you’ll want to expand your home orchard. It’s important to plan so that the future growth areas will be ready when you are.

Planting

Few things are as delicious as homegrown berries, and the success of your harvest begins right with the planting site and method. For maximum growth and yields later on, give your plants the best foundation possible.

Before Planting

Before you plant, check your soil pH. Contact your local County Extension Office for information about soil testing in your area, or purchase one of our digital meters for quick and accurate results. Tayberries grow best with a soil pH between 6.0-6.8. Tayberries grow reasonably well in almost all soils and even in deep shade. They will produce best in a medium, well-drained soil that contains plenty of organic matter.

Planting Tips

  • Space your plants 3-4 feet apart.
  • Dig a hole around 5 inches deep and spread the roots out, keeping the crown of the roots level with the soil surface.
  • Cover them with soil, tamping down firmly with your hand.
  • Trim the cane to a length of 10 inches.
  • Water your plant thoroughly and fertilize with a potash-rich fertilizer. (If planting in the fall, wait to fertilize until spring for best results.)
  • Keep the soil moist until the plant becomes established.

Additional Notes

  • Tayberry is a cross between loganberry and blackberry.
  • Supporting tayberries on a sturdy trellis is not essential with the stronger growing varieties, although all tayberries appreciate a moderate amount of support. The idea behind supporting them is to permit a free circulation of air within the plant, which helps prevent disease.
  • Tayberries will live about 15 years with proper maintenance.

Soil Preparation

Preparing your soil before you plant will greatly improve your plant’s performance and promote healthy, vigorous growth. It is a good idea to have your soil tested to determine if it is lacking in any essential minerals and nutrients. This can be done through your County Extension Office or with one of our digital meters.

The goal of soil preparation is to replenish vital minerals and nutrients, as well as break up and loosen any compacted soil.

When To Prepare Your Soil

Soil preparation can be done at any time that the ground is not too wet or frozen. Your trees may be planted even when temperatures are quite cool. If a hard frost is expected, it is advisable to delay planting for a while until temperatures become more moderate. Generally, as long as your soil is workable, it is fine to plant.

How To Prepare Your Soil

  • Roots grow faster when they’re spread out. Dig the hole deep and wide enough so the root system has plenty of room to easily expand. Keep the topsoil in a separate pile so you can put it in the bottom of the hole, where it’ll do the most good.
  • To loosen the soil, mix dehydrated cow manure, garden compost or peat moss (up to 1/3 concentration) into your pile of topsoil. Make sure the peat moss you get is either baled sphagnum or granular peat. You can also add our Coco-Fiber Potting Medium or 2 or more inches of organic material and work in evenly with the existing soil.

Your lawn can provide you with ideal organic materials such as grass clippings and shredded leaves. Not only will the grass and leaves break down to provide soil nutrients, but they will help loosen the soil as well. You can gather these in the fall with spring planting in mind.

Common soil amendments:

  • compost
  • sand
  • manure
  • lime
  • peat moss

Adding organic materials, such as our Coco-Fiber Potting Medium and compost will improve most every soil type. Organic materials bind sandy soil particles so they retain moisture and nutrients better. They also break apart clay and silt particles, so that water can infiltrate and roots can spread.

Soil Types

  • Clay and silt soils are made of very small particles. They feel slick and sticky when wet. Clay and silt hold moisture well, but resist water infiltration, especially when they are dry. Often puddles form on clay or silt soils, and they easily become compacted.
  • Loam soil is a mix of sand, silt or clay, and organic matter. Loam soils are loose and look rich. When squeezed in your fist, moist loam will form a ball, which crumbles when poked with a finger. Loam soils normally absorb water and store moisture well. Loam soils can be sandy or clay based, and will vary in moisture absorption and retention accordingly.
  • Sandy soils contain large particles that are visible to the unaided eye, and are usually light in color. Sand feels coarse when wet or dry, and will not form a ball when squeezed in your fist. Sandy soils stay loose and allow moisture to penetrate easily, but do not retain it for long-term use.

Fertilizing

In early spring, use 3 inches of compost or fertilize with bonemeal to strengthen your tayberry’s roots and stimulate increased fruit production.

Insects and Diseases

Every plant has the future potential for disease and insect damage. Factors such as location and weather will play a part in which issues your plants encounters. If available, disease-resistant varieties are the best option for easy care; and for all types of plants, proper maintenance (such as watering, pruning, spraying, weeding, and cleanup) can help keep most insects and diseases at bay.

Leafroller

Pale yellow or ‘dirty’ green worms. Leaves are rolled and webbed together where insects feed. Eventually becomes ‘skeletonized’.

Control

  • Consult County Extension Agent

Blackvine Weevils

Adults are 3/8" long, oblong-shaped, with a short snout; dull, slate gray to brownish-black color C-shaped larvae are cream colored with shiny brown heads adult weevils feed on foliage more serious damage is done by grubs (larval stage), which feed on the roots and may girdle the main stem often killing the plant.

Control

  • Consult County Extension Agent

Raspberry Crown Borer

Adult moth resembles a yellow jacket wasp, lays reddish brown eggs. Once hatched, larva migrates to the base of the plant. They will dig into the base of cane and then continue in the roots and crown. There will be a hole at the base of the plant in the crown with sawdust like frass. Plant will begin to wither and visibly wilt due to tissue damage.

Natural Control

  • Remove and destroy all infested plants.

Other Control Options

  • Consult County Extension Agent

Spider Mites

Pinpoint size, many different colors. Found on undersides of leaves. Severe infestations have some silken webbing. Sap feeding causes bronzing of leaves.

Control

  • Consult County Extension Agent

Aphids

They are the size of a pinhead and vary in color depending on the species. Cluster on stems and under leaves, sucking plant juices. Leaves then curl, thicken, yellow and die. Produce large amounts of a liquid waste called “honeydew”. Aphid sticky residue becomes growth media for sooty mold.

Control

  • Consult County Extension Agent

Crown and Cane Gall

Plants appear stunted and slow growing. Leaves may be reduced in size, little or no fruit. If plant is dead, inspect roots for hard, woody tumors. Note: many things can cause stunted plants. Appearance of round galls on stems and roots near the soil surface, young galls are small and whitish, older galls are black-brown and may girdle the stem.

Control

  • Consult County Extension Agent

Root Rot

Poorly drained soil, wet soil should be well tilled with organic matter prior to planting. Plants become unthrifty. Leaves may turn yellow to red and collapse. The crowns, when sectioned, exhibit a brown-black decay. Large roots lack small feeder roots. Larger roots may have large brown-black lesions present.

Control

  • Consult County Extension Agent

Veticillium Wilt

Infected areas will have yellowing foliage, slowed growth, large seed production and death of branches. New canes will often wilt.

Natural Control

  • Plant only certified berries.
  • Destroy infected plants, DO NOT plant in same location.
  • Plant should receive plenty of water to promote growth and avoid stress.

Other Control Options

  • Consult County Extension Agent

Pruning

Pruning is an important part of proper edible plant care, but many people find the task overwhelming. It doesn’t have to be! Keep these things in mind:

  • You can have confidence in knowing that not everyone will prune the exact same way (even the experts).
  • It is best for your plant to do some pruning versus no pruning.

Pruning Tips

  • As soon as the tayberries have been picked, cut to ground level the stems that produced berries this year.
  • Don’t prune any stems that did not produced fruit this year— they will be the ones that produce tayberries next year!

Spraying

Spraying is important to the survival of your plants. To handle potential diseases and pests, reference the guidelines below to know what you should spray, and when you should use it.

Before you begin, read and follow all instructions on labels.

Natural Control

  • Serenade® Garden Disease Control for bacterial blight.

Watering

Tayberries require an average amount of water. If you receive about an inch of rainfall every 10 days or so, your plants will be fine. If it gets really dry, you can give your new plants a good, thorough soaking with a hose. The best way to do this is to let your garden hose trickle slowly. This gives the water a chance to soak in instead of running off. You can also use a soaker hose to water several plants at once.

In case of a drought, watering is especially important when the berries are forming.

Harvesting

Are you ready to enjoy delicious homegrown fruit? Harvest is the time to enjoy the results of your hard work. Keep a few things in consideration as you reap the fruits of your labor: the best time to pick the fruit from your tree, and how to store the fruit.

When to Harvest

You can start harvesting your berries in their second season. Tayberries ripen in early August through early October when they are dark maroon color. It’s best to pick in dry conditions, wet berries do not keep for long. It’s best to pick often to reduce the risk of over ripening and rotting.

Annual average yield per plant is about 4 pounds.

Storage

They will keep in the refrigerate for several days or freeze for later use.


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Which option is best for me?

Bare-root Trees

Trees that are shipped without soil to ensure good contact with soil in your yard. When shipped, they are about 3-4' tall with 3/8" or larger trunk diameter. When they mature, they will be one of three sizes*:

Dwarf

Matures to be about 8-10' tall and wide. Provides an abundance of full-size fruit.

Semi-Dwarf

Matures to be about 12-15' tall and wide. Gives maximum fruit yield per square foot.

Standard

Matures to be about 15-25' tall and 20' wide. A multi-purpose fruit and shade tree.

Stark Supreme Tree®

Top-grade, bare-root trees that give you a head start on growing. When shipped, they are about 4-5' tall with 5/8" or larger trunk diameter.

EZ Start® Potted Trees

Trees in bottomless pots that allow some roots to be air pruned, so that a dense mass of productive, feeder roots can grow within the pot to make transplanting easier. Mature sizes vary. When shipped, they are about 1-2' tall.

Select EZ Start® Potted Trees

Top-grade, potted trees chosen to give you a head start on growing. When shipped to you, they are about 3-4' tall.

*Tree sizes may vary by variety. See our Growing Guide for details.