Growing Blackberries in Virginia

Overview

Blackberries may not be the most popular summer berry, due to their tiny, crunchy seeds, but they are often used for snacking, baking and making syrups, jams and jellies. Blackberries grow on two types of plants: erect and trailing. Erect blackberries grow upright, while trailing blackberries require support in the form of a trellis. The climate in Virginia is suitable for growing blackberries, with multiple cultivars of both erect and trailing blackberries recommended for growing in the state, according to the Virginia Cooperative Extension.

Step 1

Choose a site for planting your blackberries that has well-drained, slightly acidic soil with a pH between 6 and 6.5. They also need full sun and should be placed where they will not be subjected to strong winds.

Step 2

Remove weeds, plants, stones, sticks and other debris from your blackberry planting site.

Step 3

Till the planting site with a rototiller or hoe to loosen the top level of soil and make sure all weeds and other vegetation is removed.

Step 4

Dig a hole deep enough and wide enough to accommodate your plant's entire root structure.

Step 5

Place your plant in the hole, and allow the roots to spread out naturally. Do not force the roots into the hole, so you don't break or damage them.

Step 6

Cover the roots with 2 to 3 inches of soil, and pack it down firmly to remove air bubbles. If air is left in the soil, your blackberry plant may not grow properly.

Step 7

Water your plant thoroughly immediately after planting, so it can begin to establish its roots.

Step 8

Cut back your plant so it is just 3 to 4 inches above the ground. This allows it to create new growth, which is necessary for producing berries.

Things You'll Need

  • Blackberry plants
  • Rototiller or hoe
  • Shovel

References

  • Virginia Cooperative Extension: Small Fruit in the Home Garden
  • North Carolina Cooperative Extension Service: Growing Blackberries
Keywords: growing blackberries, blackberries in Viginia, about growing blackberries, blackberry plants

About this Author

Meghan McMahon lives in the Chicago suburbs, where she spent six years as a newspaper journalist before becoming a part-time freelance writer and editor and full-time mother. She received a bachelor's degree in journalism from Eastern Illinois University in 2000 and has written for "The Daily Southtown" and "The Naperville Sun" in suburban Chicago.