Gardening Magazine

In a Jam

By Jules
Way back in 2010 I planted out a small tayberry plant that was well overdue a permanent home. My first mention of that small plant is here.
It kind of sat by the fence for a year minding it's own business and showing just the merest hints of growing. Towards the end of 2011 it grew a bit more and then a bit more again. Three very prickly stems reached further and further out until the only way I could keep them under control was to rig up an amateur stake and wire type arrangement against the fence using some plastic coated wire and screws usually reserved for hanging net curtains. The long whippy stems, by now each a couple of metres, were tied to the wires in a 'Loch Ness monster' formation (if that's not an official fruit cultivation term, it certainly deserves to be).
In the springtime the shoots were covered in blossom and then a bumper fruit crop followed. Rather than eating the fruits fresh as they ripened, I saved them in the freezer until they fruiting period was over so I could make a big batch of jam. Five takeaway containers full gave me 3 jars of very tasty, slightly tart tayberry jam!
In a jam
In a jam
After consulting my RHS 'Pruning and Training' book, I've now cut out the stems that fruited, and am in the process of tying in the 3 rope-like stems that grew during this year. They will be my fruiting stems in 2013.

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