[nafex] Fwd: [SANET-MG] Wineberries: A Natural Crop with Promise

V. Michael Bove Jr. vmb at teakettlefarm.com
Fri Jan 27 15:31:25 EST 2012

Speaking as someone who has quite a lot of the things, I will note  
that they grow to ridiculous lengths, tip-root like mad, and don't  
mind shadier conditions than many other Rubus; you really need to keep  
up with them to prevent a row from turning into an ten-foot-wide  
impenetrable thicket.  Also, once the local birds figure them out, you  
will learn that the seeds will happily germinate in places where you  
wouldn't normally expect to have to worry about Rubus turning up (like  
cracks in a driveway!)

So I wouldn't say that Wineberries are "easily controlled when  
properly cultivated" unless "properly cultivated" means the sort of  
proper cultivation that would be involved if one wanted to grow a  
patch of, say, Japanese honeysuckle or Oriental bittersweet.

But I still love 'em.

Michael Bove
Teakettle Farm, Z6 (MA/RI border)

On Jan 26, 2012, at 9:10 PM, Lawrence F. London, Jr. wrote:

> -------- Original Message --------
> Subject: [SANET-MG] Wineberries: A Natural Crop with Promise
> Date: Wed, 20 Apr 2011 14:05:54 -0500
> From: Nature's Pace Sanctuary herm.naturespace at EARTHLINK.NET
> Reply-To: CEO at Back40Group.com
> Organization: Back 40 Group, Incorporated
> I don't know why Rubus phoenicolasius, the Wineberry, should be so
> uncommon. It is no more difficult to grow than a raspberry, to which  
> it
> is closely related. What is more, it has something to offer at most
> seasons of the year. Native to Korea and China as well as Japan, this
> vigorous deciduous shrub grows to 2.5m or 3m tall. These berries offer
> market farmers or direct marketers ease of propagation, a unique and
> tasty product that will sell for a great price. Unfortunately, 2  
> states
> have classified it as an invasive but the plant is easily controlled
> when properly cultivated. We have been growing wineberries in 2 states
> for over 10 years and have had no problems at all.
> The species is a perennial plant which bears biennial stems ("canes")
> from the perennial root system. In its first year, a new stem grows
> vigorously to its full height of 1-3 m, unbranched, and bearing large
> pinnate leaves with three or five leaflets; normally it does not  
> produce
> any flowers. In its second year, the stem does not grow taller, but
> produces several side shoots, which bear smaller leaves always with
> three leaflets; the leaves are white underneath.
> Link to fully illustrated article:
> http://back40forums.com/index.php?topic=1766.msg2745#msg2745
> "Wineberries A Plant with Commercial Promise"
> The flowers are produced in late spring on short, very bristly racemes
> on the tips of these side shoots, each flower 6--10 mm diameter with
> five purplish red to pink petals and a bristly calyx. The fruit is
> orange or red, about 1 cm diameter, edible, produced in summer or  
> early
> autumn; in botanical terminology, it is not a berry at all, but an
> aggregate fruit of numerous drupelets around a central core. Ripening
> occurs from early summer. The canes have fine, red thorns, which  
> appear
> much like red hair.
> In addition to seed propagation, new plants are formed from the tips  
> of
> existing canes touching the ground. They enjoy moist soil and grow  
> near
> and within wooded areas.
> As a fruit develops, it is surrounded by a protective calyx covered in
> hairs that exude tiny drops of sticky fluid. The Wineberry has
> orange-red bristles thick as down on its arching stems and protective
> calyces. These stems show up well in winter, especially when sunlight
> strikes them. Just like the raspberry it is biennial; that is, the  
> canes
> grow one year and fruit the next. The emerald-green leaves are up to
> 18cm long with white felted undersides, and are composed of three,
> coarsely toothed, rounded, ovate or heart-shaped leaflets.
> In early summer the small, star-like, whitish-pink, self-fertile  
> flowers
> emerge shyly, encased in a calyx - bristly armour made up of five  
> long,
> triangular bracts. Small, glistening, conical, orange-red fruit follow
> in early August. These remain almost surrounded by the calyx until  
> they
> are ripe. This keeps the berries safe from the birds until they are
> ready to pick.
> You can eat them straight off the canes or cook them in the same way  
> as
> raspberries. As Coral Guppy of Kore Wild Fruits Nursery puts it: "The
> Japanese wineberry nicely bridges the gap between summer and autumn
> raspberries."
> Every year I can hardly wait to pop my first wineberry of the season
> into my mouth. Heavens! How can such a small, tiny ruby-red berry
> taste so yummy?! This is a berry bush that has excellent potential  
> as a
> family favorite or as a good seller at farm stands or farmer's  
> markets.
> It also can be easily propagated by the farmer or gardener so once you
> have some growing plants you won't need to buy more: you can produce  
> as
> many as you want. This is a good thing since there are only 2
> nurseries in America that offer the plants for sale.
> Fortunately, the Resilience Research Farm is licensed as a Missouri
> grower and plants are available from Back40Books.com. The plants are
> available in two sizes and are dug and shipped as orders arrive so you
> are insured of fresh, viable stock. The plants are shipped in a
> soil-less mix in plastic bags. They are NOT dormant bare root plants,
> they are shipped Priority Mail fully leafed out. Nursery stock can not
> be shipped to Massachusetts or Connecticut.
> The plants are available in two sizes (all plants will bear the year
> following planting):
> For More Information click here:
> http://www.back40books.com/item.asp?b=1&n=NPSWBS
> All plants are shipped with planting, maintenance, and propagation
> instructions included or e-mailed.
> /**/*Growing tips*
> Plant the Japanese wineberry in adequately drained but fertile soil,
> preferably in a sheltered place. You will get the best fruit against a
> sunny wall. Water well in summer. You can tie the canes along wires,
> cutting out those that have fruited and tying in the replacements.
> Because the stems are vigorous you can pinch them back in spring to
> encourage branching. In theory, wineberries should be prone to pests  
> and
> diseases that assail raspberries, but in practice they are rarely
> troubled. Birds and insects find it difficult to get at the fruits
> through the calyces.
> *Propagation*
> To increase your stock, bury the cane tips in the soil in late summer.
> (Japanese wineberry roots so effectively that you must take care to
> prevent the arching stems of shrubs grown in the open from touching  
> the
> ground.) Or, you can take hardwood cuttings in late autumn.
> Feel free to mail the writer if more information is required, however
> there is a nice selection of photos included in the link above.
> Herman Beck
> Director
> Resilience Research Farm (a.k.a. The Farm at Nature's Pace Sanctuary)
> Herm.NaturesPace at earthlink.net <mailto:Herm.NaturesPace at earthlink.net
> http://www.back40books.com/item.asp?b=1&n=NPSWBS
> www.Back40Forums.com <http://www.Back40Forums.com
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