Allen Black Raspberry

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Produces large crops year after year. Large, glossy black fruit is firm and juicy with superior flavor. A cross between two exemplary black raspberry varieties, Bristol x Cumberland, resulted in this high-quality sweet, black raspberry. Cold-hardy. Mid-summer bearing. Ripens in July. Self-pollinating.

Note: Do not plant Red, Gold or Purple raspberries within 75-100 feet of Black raspberries. Black raspberries may be more susceptible to viral diseases carried by aphids to and from nearby raspberry plants.

After planting, be sure to prune the bare-root canes back to about 2 inches above the ground. (This does not apply to potted raspberry plants.) Do not skip this step! It is a crucial factor in encouraging the roots to send up new growth during the growing season. It is in the nature of raspberry plants to send up new growth as suckers or basal shoots from below the ground. This means the canes that you plant may not be where you find signs of life or new growth. When it’s time to grow, you will see new sprouts emerge from the ground around where you planted the cane, and this growth is coming from the raspberry plant’s root system.

125% Survival Guarantee!

Since 1816, Stark Bro’s has promised to provide customers with the very best fruit trees and plants. It’s just that simple. If your trees or plants do not survive, please let us know within one year of delivery. We will issue a one-time merchandise credit to your account equaling 125% of the original product purchase price. Read more about our warranty policy.


Bloom Color Orange, White
Fruit Color Black
Fruit Size Large
Pollination Self-Pollinating
Ripens/Harvest July
Shade/Sun Full Sun
Soil Composition Loamy
Soil Moisture Well Drained
Soil pH Level 6.0 - 6.8
Taste Fine Flavored
Texture Firm And Juicy
Years to Bear 1 - 2
Zone Range 4 - 8

Zone Compatibility

This Variety's Zone Range 4 - 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.


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 raspberry plants in The Growing Guide. An entire section of our website dedicated to your growing success.

Shipping Information

Arrives when it's time to plant

Your success is our priority. We work hard to make sure that your order arrives at the ideal time for planting in your location based on your local climate conditions.


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Questions & Answers

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Browse 20 questions Browse 20 questions and 78 answers
Why did you choose this?
Stark Bro's Store
My favorite fruit! Wanted to increase my bed size and introduce a new variety
CRYSTEL L on Apr 10, 2021
Because they are my absolute favorite berry!
Melissa P on Feb 10, 2021
My favorite fruit! Wanted to increase my bed size and introduce a new variety
CRYSTEL L on Apr 10, 2021
Love black raspberries & wanted to try
Charena M on Apr 4, 2021
Because they are my absolute favorite berry!
Melissa P on Feb 10, 2021
I already have a wild black raspberry patch and I'm introducing strain of tame to it ,hopefully increase the size of berries.....
Michael D on Feb 1, 2021
I wanted both kinds you have :) I will make the boxes for them now and plant them as soon as I get them
shelley s on May 25, 2020
Love black raspberries! Why not, especially since they're on sale and I live in a cool Zone 4b area.
Deidre G on May 23, 2020
I wanted to try raspberries in several spots in the yard and saw these on sale, and bought the 3-pack.
Karla H on May 22, 2020
I love black raspberries and grew up with the plants
TIMOTHY W on May 22, 2020
I love black raspberry, and these look good.
Farnklin Y on May 22, 2020
LINDA D on May 18, 2020
I remember the Cumberland from my childhood
Genevieve C on May 15, 2020
Nim adding an edible hedge to my fruit garden
Cassandra F on May 11, 2020
I have a high tunnel and I want to see what will grow in Alaska that is not supposed to grow here
mike h on May 10, 2020
My grandparents had a farm and they had a fence row with Black Raspberries and my grandmother made the best Black Raspberry cobblers and jelly!! So I am going to try to raise some black raspberries
Sheila T on May 9, 2020
It was on sale.
Julia C on May 4, 2020
My dad has fond memories of picking them when he was a child. These have less seeds than blackberrries.
Cindy O on Apr 28, 2020
ease of website and cost.
Leslie W on Apr 24, 2020
Absolutely love black raspberries
David M on Apr 13, 2020
High rating by other customers and would grow in our area (zone 8 A)
Charlene T on Apr 2, 2020
It seems to be a good quality, productive, sweet perfect raspberry. I hope you're right! Love black raspberries!
Constance P on Mar 26, 2020
Price and variety
Steve H on Mar 25, 2020
I think it's used in my area if not will you please tell me
jeff on Mar 8, 2020
I have a few..wanted to add more
Darcy W on Jan 2, 2020
Recommended by a friend
Ronald D on Jun 17, 2019
I remember picking wild black raspberries when I was little. I want my kids to experience this wonderful fruit.
Dianne Q on Jun 15, 2019
I ordered black raspberries because they are shade tolerant and walnut (juglone) tolerant.
Michelle A on May 28, 2019
Hardiness Zone and memories of tracking down wild black raspberries as a kid.
Annie S on May 17, 2019
Special pricing
Willis P on May 12, 2019
My mother wished for this instead of a bouquet for Mother's Day
Rebecca R on May 3, 2019
I chose this variety because of the yield and the reviews
Yvonne T on Apr 26, 2019
I have them already and they are doing great
Larry S on Apr 11, 2019
Recommended by the Ohio State University Extension Service for cultivation in Ohio
Marvin R on Apr 2, 2019
Purchased these before from you and wanted to add more plants
Charles N on Mar 31, 2019
I already have this variety and love them.
thilde j on Mar 30, 2019
Wanted a mix of black raspberries and different harvest times to enjoy even longer.
Franklin O on Mar 25, 2019
I'm looking for a different variety of black raspberry to go with my Niwot, Jewel, and Bristol plants
Arthur Q on Mar 13, 2019
I read in a library book that this cross was a good berry producer
Carla S on Mar 2, 2019
looking for a grower that delivered what is advertised on line (picture and description). I found that with my first order of black raspberry bushes that arrived exactly as illustrated on line add and in perfect health and condition,, both plants are thriving and producing new growth, reason for my second order. thank you
Theresa B on Jun 13, 2018
For three years now, I have been trying to raise Jewel black raspberries in raised beds on my acre lot. I've decided to add two new varieties to my patch with the Allen black raspberry.
martha d on Jan 9, 2017
They appear to be one of the easiest black raspberries to grow.
Vivian C on Oct 8, 2016
I love black raspberries and this variety is suppose to be hardy in our climate zone.
Stephen E on Mar 24, 2016
Disease resistant
BOB C on Feb 18, 2016
Love black raspberries & wanted to try
Charena M on Apr 4, 2021
I already have a wild black raspberry patch and I'm introducing strain of tame to it ,hopefully increase the size of berries.....
Michael D on Feb 1, 2021
Does this variety (Allen Black Raspberry) bear fruit on same year cane? or only on old canes?
Betty H on May 3, 2016
BEST ANSWER: This variety does not have a primocane (first-year canes) bearing habit. It bears a summer crop on floricanes (older, second-year canes).
How big are the berries?
Babycatcher on Jun 4, 2017
BEST ANSWER: Blackberries are medium to large (9/16 - 3/4"). I find Allen, Bristol and Black-
hawk (if you can find it) are a great three-some.
I purchased allen blackberries in 2015, yes they are hard to get started, need lots of initial care, first fruit was in 2016 and it was excellent! how low should I prune first year canes?
LINDA L on Mar 25, 2017
BEST ANSWER: Hello. I agree they are hard to get started! Congratulations on getting a first year crop! Now you need to cut the old first year canes to the ground. They will not bear fruit again. Then you cut the new growth of canes to about 4 to 5 feet tall. Then you trim the side shoots to about 1 foot in length. They will be the ones to bear fruit for this year. If you want more starts and the side shoots have grown long enough to touch the ground, pin them there to start rooting and therefore; starts a new plant. I hope that this has been helpful. Diana Jensen, Idaho Master Gardener
The 3 allen black raspberries I received this spring have all died. What do I do now to resolve this issue?
Doreen L on Jul 6, 2020
BEST ANSWER: Thank you for your inquiry. I'm sorry to hear about your tree. Please call Customer Support at 800.325.4180 and we'll be happy to assist you with a one-time replacement or refund if purchased within the last year.
do they have thorns?
timothypastore on Apr 16, 2017
BEST ANSWER: yes - we grow them in Maine because it takes a hardy black raspberry up here - but Allen survive and they still taste pretty good!
How do you protect the plants from disease?
Timothy G on Sep 19, 2019
BEST ANSWER: I have had these plants for 2 years, letting them develop in a local patch. Never had any disease issues, here in Northern Maine. I just apply 10-10-10 in spring and some nutrients in summer, and let them develop.
I live in a dry climate with temps ranging in winters down to zero and summer heat into the hundreds. Red raspberries thrive here but wondering how well black raspberries do in our desert climate of washington state?
Patty on May 24, 2020
BEST ANSWER: Hi, Patty! They asked me to respond to your question regarding black raspberries. I live in Oklahoma, where our summers are hot and winters aren???t as cold as yours. I???m originally from Indiana where the winters are horribly cold and the black raspberries thrived. I bought 2 plants, this will be my second summer, and they have lots of nice buds; I???m looking forward to picking them this summer. I researched lots before I planted. They are along the North side of my house, sheltered from the intense afternoon heat, on a slight slope so the soil isn???t soggy, and shaded in the afternoon. I used compost/manure, mulched them that first winter and have them trellised. I looked up training and pruning black raspberries to get an idea of how to do build a support. Hope you have success!
Does the plant have thorns?
Eileen M on May 10, 2020
BEST ANSWER: I do not know the plants did not survive.
How should black raspberries be pruned? It seems they are pruned differently than red raspberries.
Rebecca B on Apr 13, 2020
BEST ANSWER: I cut back the cane when all the raspberries have been harvested. I cut them to approximately 2 - 3inches above ground level. You only cut back the canes that have produced raspberries this year.
How much fruit do you get per plant?
Andrew C on Mar 31, 2020
BEST ANSWER: Andrew, my black raspberries are only two years down, so last year was the first year I harvested. So it was a light year. From five plants, I got about three quarts. This year, I have nine very healthy-looking plants. If all goes well, I am expecting 10-12 quarts. But your yield will also depend on the quality of your soul and sun. I recommend this variety to you - so far it has produced deliciously.
Will these plants bear fruit the first year they are planted?
June G on Mar 9, 2021
BEST ANSWER: We appreciate you reaching out to us. You can find the years-to-bear information in the Characteristics section, near the top of the page, underneath the description. This takes 1-2 years after planting to bear.

If you have any further questions please don't hesitate to reach back out to us. Have a great day!
How long will it take my blac raspberries to sprout greenery after planting?
Carlitta B on Jun 7, 2020
BEST ANSWER: We appreciate you reaching out to us. Typically we say allow 4-6 weeks after planting for them to break dormancy and start to produce greenery.
If you have any further questions please don't hesitate to reach back out to us. Have a great day!
I ordered allen black raspberry's, we had a major cold front come through just after they arrived so I didn't plant for about 1.5 weeks after they showed. Soaked the root ball over night then planted and have keeped them well watered for about 3 weeks, how do i tell if they survived, not seeing anything happening, or how long before Ill see some type of action after they were planted?
Cliff P on Jun 3, 2020
BEST ANSWER: We appreciate you reaching out to us. Typically after planting new growth should appear in 4-6 weeks, be careful not to over water. They only require about a gallon of water every 7-10 days.

If you have any further questions please don't hesitate to reach back out to us. Have a great day!
Can the Allen raspberries tolerate some
Elena G on Jun 1, 2020
BEST ANSWER: We appreciate you reaching out to us. They prefer full sun but as long as they get 6 hours they should do fine in a partially shaded area.

If you have any further questions please don't hesitate to reach back out to us. Have a great day!
How long does it generally take for the bare root plants to show signs of life? I planted mine on May 15 and two weeks, despite following all the instructions and a nice amount of heat and water,
They still are a bare stick. Thanks!
Elena G on Jun 1, 2020
BEST ANSWER: We appreciate you reaching out to us. We typically say allow 4-6 weeks for them to break dormancy, but depending on weather it could vary. We recommend you try a scratch test: //
If that test determines the tree is no longer living and in need of replacement, please contact our Customer Support Team at 800.325.4180. They'd be happy to help.
I just purchased some of these about 3 weeks ago, planted them and they are still just "sticks". No sign of life yet. How long before growth can be seen?
Rodger on May 25, 2020
BEST ANSWER: We appreciate you reaching out to us. Typically you will see growth emerge in 4-6 weeks after planting.

If you have any further questions please don't hesitate to reach back out to us. Have a great day!
How big are theshipped plants?
Elizabeth D on Feb 9, 2020
BEST ANSWER: We appreciate you reaching out to us. These are shipped approx. 12-18 inches tall.

If you have any further questions please don't hesitate to reach back out to us. Have a great day!
When is the best time to plant?
Timothy G on Sep 19, 2019
BEST ANSWER: Thank you for your question. Because weather and soil conditions vary so much from year to year and even within your zone, it's best to think of your planting time as a range of favorable conditions instead of an exact time.

You can plant new plants and trees: 1) when the ground is not frozen, 2) when daytime temperatures are above freezing (32??F) and below 90??F, and 3) when extreme weather (blizzard, hail, torrential rain, etc.) is not in the forecast. Be sure to keep plants watered if you're transplanting in warm and/or dry weather.
Do you ship to Indiana ?
Ruth L on Mar 23, 2018
BEST ANSWER: Yes, we ship to all of the continental U. S. states and Alaska.

Customer Reviews

4.0 / 5.0
14 Reviews
5 Stars
4 Stars
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1 Star
Love my black raspberries!
I bought my raspberries last spring and they all survived planting (I bought 3 sets of 3 plants, 9 total). No sign of disease and they grew very well that first summer. It produced a few berries that first year from the 2nd year old stem and the berries were tasty. The canes this year are huge and covered in flowers (it's only mid May) and I can't wait to get my ripe berries soon! My only advice to Start Bros and anyone who buys these berries, would be to get more info on the best growing techniques for that first year (and for the years after). I found some good info from Cornell University for pruning (but only for the 2nd year canes, not the first year). I did not find anything on the best fertilizing type/method.

Here are some things I've learned that could help others:

Black Raspberries LOVE water, give them as much as they can take.

That first year, protect the shoots under 2 feet tall from rodents (chicken wire) and insects/slugs (I had trouble with ear wigs and slugs on some). It they get chewed on when small it really sets them back for the whole rest of the season.

I trellised my canes that first year, many of them growing to about 20 feet long. As I look at them flowering now in year 2, the amount of flowers dwindles away the farther from the base of the plant. I recommend letting the canes grow all season, but prune them back in early spring. The shoots tend to dry and die back a little from the prune site, so pruning just before bud break seems best. I would also recommend pruning the canes to about 8 feet long and any lateral branches that grew to about 2-3 feet long (depending on how thick they are). Thinner canes don't seem to produce as much flowering.
May 19, 2017
over 5 years ago
Allen Black Rasp
Just a quick history. My grandfather Herbert Allen is the one that developed this berry around 1965. I believe that it is one of the best berries. As far as my berries they have yet to produce any but I know that they will either this year or next year for sure. The bushes are firm and growing very well. Looking forward to the fruit. This is my first opportunity to grow this berry in over 40 years.
May 17, 2016
over 6 years ago
Grows better than a weed.
This will be the first year it produces. The cains grew to great lengths last year. Little tending was necessary as they took off from the start.
May 4, 2017
over 4 years ago
For: Allen Black Raspberry
We live in the Midwest, I found it hard to get these raspberries plants started but if you do get them started they do quite well. Wounderful sweet fruit, enjoy!
May 6, 2016
over 6 years ago
Love my black raspberries
These bushes grew up to be very full and healthy, and the fruit is delicious. Liked them so much that after my first order of six, the following year I bought six more.
June 14, 2017
over 4 years ago
Great plants, grew well!
I planted these last spring inside my fenced garden in southern NH. I covered the ground with straw mulch over the winter. This year the shoots have multiplied and everything looks healthy so far.
May 23, 2017
Grows great in Maryland
I purchased these several years ago. Bought 3 plants and put them in my yard.
Two survived (mostly due to placement) and from those two bushes we got enough berries to make 16 pies! They are juicy, plump berries (some of the best). Since these berries were invented by someone in my wife's family, she wanted this variety to grow. We have now moved to a new house and just ordered a lot more.
April 15, 2019
over 2 years ago
Very Vigorous growth
These plants will take over a space quickly after the first year, if you don't train them with some sort of trellis system. They are very large and tasty fruits!
January 9, 2020
over 3 years ago
Deck in Brooklyn
I had good luck for years at another deck in Brooklyn, morning sun, with black raspberries in large pots, 12 to 14 inches as I remember, measured from the top. They survived some really harsh winters. Then I decided to add a red raspberry bush. The black raspberry bushes were dead in weeks. Going to the Internet, I learned you cannot do that. Anyway, at a different location, less sun, starting over, I decided to go back to the black raspberries. Sparse in their first year. But they look really good now. Lots of developing berries on last year's canes, and new canes growing nicely. And this all in spite of a very dicey spring. So that's a positive. My efforts with red raspberries (after the unfortunate culture clash) plus blueberries did not work, or at least well. Black raspberries at least for me seem a lot more resilient. We'll see how big and succulent they are. Last time out, they were good, but the seeds were a little hard, more pronounced than you would want. But we're talking containers here. So, again, we'll see.
June 11, 2018
over 4 years ago
Survived the winter!
Ealthy and strong this spring... berries expected.
May 13, 2017
over 4 years ago