Blackberry Loch Ness: variety description and cultivation features
Each person endowed with a garden plot, strives to grow on it both healthy fruits and vegetables, as well as easy-to-care berries, which will be a pleasant addition to the daily menu and decoration of the courtyard. Raspberries, gooseberries and blackberries often play this role. The latter is enjoyed by gardeners, as it is low-calorie, but at the same time it contains a complete set of micronutrients and medicinal substances. A popular, unpretentious and high-yielding variety of blackberries - Loch Ness (Loch Ness).
The history of the appearance of the blackberry Loch Ness
The Loch Ness variety is relatively young, as it was obtained by the Englishman Derek Jennings in 1990. The basis for the creation was the European species of blackberry, logan berry and raspberry. It is noteworthy that Jennings discovered the raspberry L1 gene , which causes large-fruity, which was subsequently used in breeding. Most varieties bred on the basis of this gene showed yield and an unprecedented size of berries weighing 6 grams or more (in some cases, fruits weighing 16, 18 and even 23 grams are found). The raspberry variety with the L1 gene was the ancestor of the blackberry Loch Ness, recognized as successful and awarded by the Royal Society of Gardeners of Britain.
Photo gallery: Loch Ness blackberry - from flowering to harvest
- Blackberry flowers bloom in June and are loved by bees for the abundance of nectar.
- In the spring, blackberries are planted before the leaves hatch
- Loch Ness berries are dried, boiled, used as decoration for cakes and eat fresh
Blackberry Loch Ness grows in all Russian regions and is popular among gardeners in the Moscow Region and the Moscow Region. The bush is half-spread, looks compact and neat, although untimely thinning of the shoots causes thickening. The crown is semi-vertical, the branches are dense, smooth, without thorns. The height of the shoots is more than four meters, while the rods are erect from below and creeping from above. This feature of the bush requires either pruning or the installation of vertical trellises, which will support the plant.
To ensure the growth of the blackberry bush, you should install vertical trellises, otherwise the rods will bend under the weight of the berries
Ripe berries are black and elongated, one-dimensional, with a shiny surface.
Juice made from ripe fruits and young blackberry leaves has a firming and calming effect on the body.
The average weight of berries is 5–10 g. The pulp is juicy, dense, with a distinctive characteristic aroma. At the stage of technical ripeness, the taste of berries contains sourness, but when fully ripened, the fruits become sweet and sugary. Due to the pronounced black color of the berries, gardeners mistakenly take technical ripeness as complete and remain dissatisfied with the sour taste.
Loch Ness is famous for its large heavy fruits, capable of growing up to 23 g
Blackberry strengthens the immune system and stabilizes the body after serious illness.
Useful properties of blackberry Loch Ness
The variety’s specialty is that berries contain little vitamin C, but they contain vitamins A and E, niacin, thiamine, beta-carotene and riboflavin, tannins, phenols and glycosides, as well as organic acids. The proven beneficial properties of Loch Ness with regular use are as follows:
- beneficial effect on the heart muscle, minimizing the likelihood of a heart attack;
- normalizes blood pressure;
- cleanses and strengthens the walls of blood vessels;
- neutralizes inflammation of internal organs;
- accelerates the passage of bile, the removal of stones from the kidneys;
- improves blood composition, slows down the aging of cells;
- stabilizes the gastrointestinal tract;
- helps to cope with viruses, normalizes body temperature;
- prevents psychosomatic disorders and neurosis.
One of the advantages of the Loch Ness blackberry is its low soil composition (although moist sod-podzolic loams with an abundance of humus are considered to be preferred for growing this variety). In addition, the bushes resist disease and are frost-resistant. Blackberries can not be covered for the winter - at a temperature in the range of -17–20 ° C, the bushes will not be affected. However, experienced gardeners are still advised not to take risks.
Blackberry berries of this variety are collected in multiple brushes, so their collection does not cause difficulties
Although the blackberry Loch Ness is unpretentious, the bush will bear fruit and delight the harvest only with an attentive attitude. Therefore, both landing and subsequent care are important.
When the roots of the mother bush are damaged, the plant quickly forms a root shoot. Loch Ness propagates mainly by rooting the tops, although other methods are practiced:
- by seeds;
- green cuttings or rooted tops;
- summer or autumn woody shoots;
- air layering;
- dividing the bush.
The rootless cuttings are not propagated by studless varieties - in this case, prickly plants will be obtained from them. Loch Ness seedlings take root and bear fruit in the second year of life. The mid-season blackberry, ripening occurs in the second decade of August, although in some areas it occurs two weeks later. The brushes are sung gradually, so the harvest lasts 1–1.5 months. The collection process itself does not cause difficulties, since there are no thorns on the bush, and berries are formed on the lateral branches. On average, 15 kg of berries are harvested from one bush, and experienced gardeners express the opinion that caring for an adult plant increases productivity to 25-30 kg. At the same time, the berries do not lose their presentation and calmly endure transportation; therefore, Loch Ness is often grown for commercial purposes.
Landing activities begin in early spring. For landing, choose lighted, windless areas without holes and indentations. Landing is as follows:Recent entries In April, I process roses so that no pests encroach on my beauties
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- Pits with a size of 40x40x40 cm are prepared for seedlings. It is also taken into account that the blackberry needs free space, therefore a distance of 1.5–2.5 m is maintained between the bushes. If you plan to plant the plants in rows, the gap between them is at least two meters. When mechanized processing of planting aisles make at least three meters.
- A mixture of fertilizers is placed at the bottom of the pit: 5 kg of compost or humus, 50 g of potassium salt and 100 g of superphosphate. Fertilizers are thoroughly mixed with the ground and additionally covered with a layer of soil so that young seedlings are not burned.
- Each plant is placed in a pit, spreading the roots from top to bottom. Root buds 2–4 cm below ground level. Having placed the seedling in an appropriate manner, fill the hole with soil.
- A freshly planted bush is watered, mulch the hole with compost (for example, straw or humus), and the aerial part of the seedling is shortened to 25 cm.
- In order to avoid future care difficulties, immediately after planting, place a support next to the seedlings - a two-meter trellis with three rows of wire at a height of 50–75 cm, 120–140 cm and 180 cm. As the shoots grow, the shoots are attached to the support - first to the lower row wire, then to the middle, and at the end to the top. Fix the branches in a zigzag pattern, braiding around the support. The height of the trellis is not greater than the row spacing, otherwise the neighboring rows will lack light.
- To prevent weed growth, the soil between the rows is mulched with straw, sawdust, peat or black agrofibre.
Caring for Blackberry Bushes
In the first year of life, the bush does not need care - the plant is watered as the soil dries and the soil is loosened between rows in the absence of covering material. If there is no mulch near the blackberry bushes, the soil is loosened cautiously, since damage to the roots of Loch Ness and similar bearingless varieties provokes the growth of prickly basal shoots.
During the autumn pruning of blackberries, the prolapsed branches are cleaned under the root, leaving no stumps
From the second year, the plant is looked after by traditional agricultural technology:
- In May, spring pruning, shortening of shoots by 15–20 cm and cutting of lateral growths to stimulate flowering are carried out.
- Growing branches are fixed on the support - it is easier to process the bush and harvest. The Loch Ness variety is attached to the trellis by the method of fan formation, separating the growing branches from the fruiting ones.
- Periodically, the plant is sprayed with sulfuric solutions to exclude fungal infections and tick infestations.
- Blackberries growing in arid conditions do not accumulate the required amount of sweetness in berries and stop the growth of young shoots. Therefore, for normal development and fruiting, you should constantly maintain moderate soil moisture, in which the berry grows. To do this, the bushes are regularly watered and mulched with a five-centimeter layer of compost, grass or humus. Sometimes wood bark and needles are added to the mulch. Excess moisture with frequent watering provokes spoilage of berries and the development of fungi.
- The appearance of weeds near the berry bushes will slow down the growth of shoots and the development of fruits. Weeding is necessary so that the grass does not draw useful trace elements from the soil.
- Starting from the third or fourth year of life, blackberries are regularly fertilized. In the spring, nitrogen fertilizing is introduced (ammonium nitrate, urea, humus). In September-October, the plant is fertilized with phosphorus-potash fertilizers that do not contain chlorine.
- In the first autumn months, the second pruning is carried out, the offspring branches are removed and the lateral growths are trimmed. Thinning bushes, leaving 4-6 shoots to combat thickening of blackberries and prevent fungal diseases. When conducting autumn pruning, do not leave hemp after removing extra shoots.
- In winter, they cover the blackberry, bending the branches to the ground and covering it with peat, sawdust or leaves. The branches are removed from the support and carefully folded into a ring or laid on the ground with the wire. Covering material and agrofibre or plastic film are placed on top. Between the stems leave poison for the mice.
Gardeners reviews about Loch Ness
The variety was obtained by Jennings in SCRI England in 1990. The variety was created on the basis of European species of blackberry, logan berry and raspberry. The bushes are half-spreading, compact, shoots are long, not more than 4 m long. Berries with an average weight of 4 g are one-dimensional, black, shiny, dense, the mobility is very high. The berry is tasty and fragrant. Ripens in August. In case of damage to the head of the bush, it gives non-stunted growth. Suitable for fresh consumption and processing. This is official data. I’ll add from myself. My berry is much larger than 4 g, at the level of Smutsem, sweeter than Thornfrey and the seeds are much smaller. It requires shelter for the winter. The yield is very high, the fruits are multi-berry like Thornfrey. Perfectly propagated by rooting tops. One of the leading varieties in the world.Oleg Saveyko
Last spring, I bought along with many in Brest such a blackberry. Two varieties: Thorn Free and Loch Ness. Fruited. Well, what can I say ... It tastes disgusting, alas. Maybe because the first year.Elena X
Loch Ness is a semi-upright variety (the most productive group), the berry is medium-sized, sweet, ripens 10 days earlier. The best blackberry seedlings are seedlings from the apical bud. As a rule, two-year-old bushes planted with such seedlings are practical adult bushes.marina ufa
Loch Ness ripens at the same time or a little earlier than Hull Thornless. Its shoots are less energetic than Chester, Black Satin or Hull Thornless, frost resistance is good or better than the above varieties.Uralochka
Last spring, several seedlings of Loch Ness were planted. Over the summer, each gave 2-3 young shoots about 3 m long, and each of them several lateral shoots about a meter long. In general, in the first year all the space around you was braided! What will be next?Ivan Pavlovich
Video: the secrets of growing blackberries
Blackberries Loch Ness with a bright taste and decorative qualities fell in love with gardeners. Branches on the trellis in early summer are covered with flowers, and at the end of the season are strewn with black berries. Blackberry bushes resemble a hedge and adorn the compound. This unpretentious variety is suitable for growing goodies for one family, as well as for commercial use.