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A Stark Bro's Exclusive!New Product!

A real gem. Vigorous, upright canes are thornless for easy-to-grow and easy-to-pick berries. Soft-textured, glossy blackberries melt in your mouth – best for eating fresh and using in your favorite recipes. Flavor is irresistibly sweet, with 11-12% soluble solids and a lower acidity than other blackberries, which all makes for a pleasurable eating experience. May produce yields of up to 11 – 15 lbs. of fruit per plant. A productive, thornless primocane blackberry variety! Introduced in 2017. First-year canes begin ripening in late August into September, while second-year canes bear heaviest crops in July. Continues to fruit until frost. Everbearing primocane. Self-pollinating. May be covered by patent (U.S.P.P. application filed). APF-205T cultivar


Bloom Color White
Fruit Color Black
Fruit Size Large
Pollination Self-pollinating
Ripens/Harvest First Year Canes Late August, Second Year Canes July
Shade/Sun Full Sun
Soil Composition Loamy
Soil Moisture Well Drained
Soil pH Level 6.0 - 6.8
Taste Excellent, Sweet
Texture Soft, Smooth
Years to Bear 1 - 2
Zone Range 5 - 8

Zone Compatibility

This Variety's Zone Range 5 - 8
My Hardiness Zone ?
The USDA hardiness zones offer a guide to varieties that will grow well in certain climates. Each zone corresponds to the minimum winter temperatures experienced in a given area. Make sure that your hardiness zone lies within the zone compatability range of this variety before ordering.

Size & Spacing

Mature Size

When your plant matures, it will be approximately 4 - 5' tall x 3 - 4' wide.

Recommended Spacing

We recommend spacing these plants 3 - 4' apart to ensure room for growth.

Recommended Pollinators

This variety is self pollinating.

In many cases, you may still want to plant pollinating partners to increase the size of your crops, but with self-pollinating varieties doing so is optional. You'll get fruit with only one plant!

Tools & Supplies

Having the proper tools and supplies when growing your own can make the difference between a good harvest and a great harvest! Here's a list that our experts recommend for this variety.

Planting & Care

Learn all about how to grow blackberry plants in The Growing Guide. An entire section of our website dedicated to your growing success.

Shipping Information

Estimated Delivery Date

You don't pay until it ships.

We work hard to make sure that your order arrives at the ideal time for planting in your location. That's why we only ship living products during certain times of the year. Order now and your credit card won't be charged until your climate is suitable for planting success and your order is shipped.

Our Promise of Satisfaction

1 Year Warranty

Every order comes with our promise of satisfaction. If you aren't completely satisfied with your order, let us know within one year for a free one-time replacement or refund.


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Questions & Answers

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Browse 6 questions Browse 6 questions and 7 answers
Why did you choose this?
Stark Bro's Store
Thornless, upright canes, large excellent fruit
JOHN K on Sep 15, 2018
Thornless, upright canes, large excellent fruit
JOHN K on Sep 15, 2018
Cindy G on Jul 3, 2018
Cindy G on Jul 3, 2018
Are the berries really seedy?
Kim W on Oct 23, 2017
BEST ANSWER: No, they are not, relatively speaking. The seed volume of Stark Black Gem is small: 6.2mm compared to Natchez (8.9), Ouachita (7.2) and Prime Ark 45 (8.1).
How does this plant compare to primeark freedom? Is the fruit the only thing different
Adam R on Jul 31, 2018
BEST ANSWER: Stark Black Gem is a very sweet, soft fruit that literally melts in your mouth. It has a low solids percentage and is a prolific producer. Prime-Ark is a little earlier than Black Gem and a bit more drought-tolerant.
Is this variety slow growing? We planted them probably a month or longer ago and they have not grown much at all if any.
Debbie T on May 12, 2018
BEST ANSWER: Did you check the soil pH and amend it if needed before you planted? Blackberries like a pH of between 5.5 and 7.0. If you bought bare-root plants, have you been watering them adequately? New plants take a while to establish and take off, a little patience is really all they need if the pH and water needs are being addressed.
is the Starks Black Gem similar to the Prime Ark Freedom? If so what are the significant differences?
Thomas T on Dec 28, 2017
BEST ANSWER: Black Gem grows in a similar fashion as Prime-Ark Freedom, but Black Gem has fewer/smaller seeds and has a very velvety texture. The berries literally melt in your mouth. It is also a fine producer, giving you 11-15 lbs. of fruit per plant per year.
Are these good for wine making?
debbie m on Oct 24, 2017
BEST ANSWER: These blackberries have a very velvety texture and are sweet, with soluble solids of 11-12% - usually with reduced acidity compared to many blackberries. While probably too sweet to stand alone, Black Gem would be a superb addition to a blend to temper a berry high in acidic, with a more tart taste.

Customer Reviews

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1 Review
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1 Star
Great spreader.
Last year was the first full year and I had berries... Not a lot but I had berries. This year already grown almost half. Can't wait for the berries.
May 6, 2018
11 months ago