Sowing the seed from loganberries

A few years ago I was interested to find what happened when loganberry seed was sown. I took the seeds from a thornless variety with the curious name L654. This is less vigorous than the thorny variety.

Like all loganberries, this berry has mixed parentage; reputedly raspberry x blackberry.

I used the method described under Raspberries - growing them from seed (on the fruit page), obtained a lot of seedlings, no two of which looked the same, and when they were big enough to handle, potted them up and distributed some of them to friends for them to evaluate.

Most of the seedlings were very vigorous with loganberry-like leaves; some were rampant, and one of mine grew three metres in the first year, and had a stem nearly an inch thick covered in thorns. They all flowered profusely in the second year and we were expecting a decent crop of loganberry-like fruit, but none of the plants produced anything - apart from a single boysenberry-like fruit on one plant. On consulting a biologist friend he explained about unusual genetic behaviour in RUBUS, and told me that the lack of fruit was probably due to an odd number of chromosomes. So all of the loganberry -like monsters were grubbed up.

There were also some very thin, spindly seedlings with leaves nothing like loganberry. In my experiment there were just two of these, as opposed to about a dozen of the sterile "loganberry" plants. They were potted up and then planted outside. They turned out to be mid- season raspberries; on one plant they were rather like the old variety "Lloyd George" and on the second plant they were similar to "Zeva". They fruit later than summer raspberries, but earlier than autumn varieties, and it was worth producing a small bed of them from the suckers.

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