Tayberries are a cross between blackberries and raspberries. They are grown like summer fruiting raspberries, but rather than planting individual canes, a single tayberry plant produces many canes to provide a sizeable family harvest.
See our introduction to growing hybrid berries.
Tayberries are a great addition to an allotment or fruit garden. They produce large sweet fruit almost the size of an adult’s thumb, and are delicious eaten raw, or perhaps even better, when cooked to make deserts or jam.
They are also very hardy and disease resistant. The investment in waiting for the plant to become established should be repaid in harvests over many years.
How To Plant Tayberries
November is an ideal time for planting tayberries, although late winter and very early in spring are alternatives. They should be planted during their dormant season.
A good way of planting tayberries is first to create a strong frame by driving tall stakes (240cm high) into the ground about 3m apart. Rows of wire can be strung between the stakes to create a strong frame for supporting canes.
The tayberry plant should then be set in a hole midway between the canes. Ideally the hole should be well dug and the earth mixed with well rotted organic matter. A rich well rotted manure is ideal.
How To Grow Tayberries
Growing tayberries requires patience as the first proper harvest will happen approximately 18 months after planting.
Tayberries fruit on canes grown the previous year. This means that after winter planting, a tayberry plant will spend the first summer growing canes, which should be tied into the support structure in a fan shape. The following summer these canes will provide the harvest.
Tayberry plants are hardy, and compared to raspberries, develop a root system deeper into the ground. This means they are less sensitive to dry periods. However, they should be watered to avoid the soil drying out, especially in the first year when the plant is becoming established.
When fruiting, tayberries will need a net to protect against birds.
Once tayberry canes have fruited they should be cut back to the ground. However, do not cut back all canes! New summer growth must be retained. These canes will provide their crop the following summer.
Buckingham Tayberry. Large crops of large, purple, delicious fruit. Good for deserts, even better made into jam. Harvest from July.
Read more on Suttons Seeds.