Blackberries are a sometimes overlooked berry. In some areas of the country, they grow unbidden and as vigorous as weeds. In other regions, the sweet nectar of the berry is sought after, cultivated and the fruit eagerly anticipated. While easy to grow, the succulent qualities of the berries are reliant on knowing when to water blackberry vines.
Watering blackberries sufficiently will yield the largest, juiciest fruit. So when it comes to blackberry irrigation, how much water do blackberries need?
When to Water Blackberry Vines
If you live in an area with average rainfall, you probably won’t need to water blackberries after the first growing year once they have been established. The first year of growth, however, is another matter.
When watering blackberries, always water during the day and water at the base of the plants to minimize fungal disease. During the growing season, blackberry plants should be kept consistently moist from mid-May through October.
How Much Water do Blackberries Need?
When it comes to blackberry irrigation, plants need to be kept consistently moist after the first 2-3 weeks from planting. This means that the top inch or so (2.5 cm.) of soil should be kept moist for the first few weeks.
Thereafter, give the plants 1-2 inches (2.5 to 5 cm.) of water per week during the growing season and up to 4 inches (10 cm.) per week during harvest season. Keep in mind that blackberry plants are shallow-rooted so the root system isn’t diving down into the soil for moisture; it all needs to be at the surface.
That said, while the plants should be kept consistently moist, do not allow the soil to become sodden which can result in fungal root diseases.