Novelty berries for the garden

Firstberry 'Blue Velvet'.
Firstberry 'Blue Velvet'.
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We are being encouraged to become much more adventurous in deciding which fruit types to grow in our gardens.

There was a time when the sight of a loganberry (raspberry x blackberry) laden with large fruits was one of the few novelties around.

Pointilla 'Amoroso'.

Pointilla 'Amoroso'.

Now we are spoiled for choice with the likes of jostaberry, a gooseberry x blackcurrant hybrid, and the ugli, a tangerine-grapefruit cross.

The Ken Muir fruit catalogue is always a welcome sight because it has such a wide range of choice but Lubera (www.lubera.co.uk) really excites with its recent introductions. They were behind the Redlove apple series, and the latest offerings from them include a shrubby Pointilla Amoroso with clusters of red edible fruits in October, Firstberry Blue Velvet and the Canadian Saskatoon Berry. The Arctic Blackberry Arom arctic Systrar is very different.

It’s a perennial ground covering plant with pink-violet flowers in May and red fruits from July to August. They suggest that it’s ideal for hanging baskets and I can just imagine it as part of a trio dangling alongside strawberries and Tumbling Tom tomatoes.