Raspberries > Raspberry Plant Varieties and Cultivars

Raspberry Plant Varieties and Cultivars

This list is by no means complete, but it offers good insight into several common cultivars. Credits go to several U.S. universities, including Cornell and Maryland, for providing the necessary information.

Early Season

  • Boyne (Manitoba, sibling to Killarney) plants are spiny and produce many suckers. The fruit ripens early and is small to medium in size and somewhat dark and soft, but it has fair flavor and good freezing quality. It has excellent winter hardiness but is susceptible to anthracnose. It is moderately resistant to late yellow rust and tolerant to Phytophthora root rot and crown gall, but is susceptible to raspberry fireblight. Boyne yields very well and is recommended for colder climates.
  • Killarney* (Manitoba, sibling of Boyne) has short to medium canes, is spiny, and produces many suckers. It is moderately resistant to Phytophthora root rot. It is susceptible to mildew and anthracnose. The fruit ripens early, but after Prelude and Boyne. The fruit is medium-sized but very bright red and may crumble. Flavor and freezing quality are good, but berries may soften in warm weather. This cultivar is very hardy and is recommended for colder climates.
  • Prelude* (Cornell University-NYSAES, Plant Patent #11,747) is the earliest summer fruiting cultivar available. The fruit is medium sized, round, and firm with good flavor. It is very resistant to Phytophthora root rot and has good cold hardiness. A moderate fall crop is large enough to warrant double cropping. It is probably the best early season cultivar available for the northeast.

Mid Season

  • Canby* (Oregon) canes are tall, nearly spineless, and moderately productive. The fruit ripens mid season, is medium to large in size, firm, and bright red with excellent flavor. It has moderate to poor hardiness, and buds may winter kill in cold climates. It is susceptible to Phytophthora root rot.
  • Claudia (KCE-1, University of Maryland, Patent pending) produces stout, upright canes. The fruit is large and conical with good flavor and ripens mid to late season A late fall crop is common. It has acceptable cold hardiness for most areas. This is a new release that is relatively untried, but has performed well in Geneva.
  • Emily (JAM-1, University of Maryland, Plant Patent #12,350) produces large midseason fruit with good yield potential. It is susceptible to Phytophthora root rot and has suspect cold hardiness. This is a new release that is relatively untried and has performed poorly at Geneva.
  • Esta (GEL-114, University of Maryland, Patent pending) produces fruit mid to late season that are large and conical with a mild, bland flavor. It is susceptible to Phytophthora root rot and lacks cold hardiness. It is resistant to leaf hoppers. It needs trellising for ease of picking. This is a new release that is relatively untried.
  • Nova (Nova Scotia) is vigorous and upright with long, fruiting laterals. The canes have very few spines. The fruit ripens in mid-season and is medium sized, bright red, firm, and somewhat acidic in taste. It is considered to have better than average shelf life. The plants are very hardy and appear to resist most common cane diseases, including rust. It will set a late fall crop.
  • Titan* (Cornell University-NYSAES, Plant patent # 5404) produces large canes with very few spines with suckers that emerge mostly from the crown, so it is slow to spread. It is susceptible to crown gall and Phytophthora root rot but is extremely productive. Fruits ripen mid to late season and are extremely large and dull red, with mild flavor. Berries are difficult to pick unless fully ripe. With only fair hardiness, Titan is for moderate climates. It is resistant to the raspberry aphid vector of mosaic virus complex.
Late Season
  • Encore* (Cornell University-NYSAES, Plant patent # 11,746) is one of the latest summer fruiting raspberry available. It produces large, firm, slightly conical berries with very good, sweet flavor. The fruit quality is considered very good. It is moderately susceptible to Phytophthora root rot and has good cold hardiness.
  • K81-6 (Nova Scotia) produces canes that are medium tall with spines only at the base. The fruit is very large with good flavor that ripens very late summer with average firmness. It is resistant to late yellow rust but is susceptible to leaf curl virus and raspberry fire blight. Hardiness is judged adequate for most areas.

Black Raspberries

  • Bristol (Cornell University-NYSAES) is vigorous and high yielding for a black raspberry especially in a newly established planting. The fruit ripens early and is medium to large and firm, with excellent flavor. Bristol is hardy for a black raspberry but should be tested to ensure adequate hardiness. It is susceptible to anthracnose and raspberry mosaic complex but is tolerant to powdery mildew.
  • Jewel* (Cornell University-NYSAES) is vigorous, erect, and productive for a black raspberry. This cultivar appears to be more disease resistant than others and includes resistance to anthracnose. The fruit is firm, glossy, and flavorful and ripens in mid-season. This is a hardy black raspberry cultivar.
  • Mac Black is new to the scene and has not been tested much. It is a late season black raspberry with medium large berries. It is reported to have good cold hardiness for a black raspberry. Definitely worth a look to extend your black raspberry harvest by 7-10 days.

Purple Raspberries

  • Brandywine (Cornell University-NYSAES) produces canes that are very tall with prominent thorns, and suckers grow only from the crown so the plant will not spread. It is susceptible to crown gall but partially resistant to many other diseases. Fruits ripen later than most red cultivars and are large, dull reddish-purple, and can be quite tart. Berries are best used for processing. This is a high yielding cultivar.
  • Royalty* (Cornell University-NYSAES, Plant patent # 5405) is considered the best purple raspberry available. The canes are tall and vigorous, with thorns, and are extremely productive. Royalty is immune to the large raspberry aphid, which decreases the probability of mosaic virus infection, but is susceptible to crown gall. Fruits ripen late and are large and reddish-purple to dull purple when fully ripe. Berries tend to be soft but sweet and flavorful when eaten fresh. Excellent for processing. Hardiness is acceptable for northern growing areas.

Fall Bearing

  • Anne (University of Maryland, Plant patent # 10,411) produces large, conic, pale yellow fruit with very good flavor and texture in mid to late season. It produces tall upright canes but does not sucker adequately for good stands. It is resistant to Phytophthora root rot.
  • Autumn Bliss (Great Britain, Plant Patent #6597) is an early ripening raspberry with large, highly flavored fruit. It ripens 10 to 14 days before Heritage. Much of the crop is produced within the first two weeks of harvest, which is an advantage in northern climates. It produces short canes with few spines. The fruit is somewhat dark fruit. It is susceptible to raspberry bushy dwarf virus.
  • Autumn Britten* (Great Britain) is early ripening with large, firm, good flavored fruit. It is taller than Autumn Bliss with better fruit quality but slightly lower yields. It is a day or two later than Autumn Bliss.
  • Caroline* (University of Maryland, Plant patent # 10,412) is a large, good flavored, conical fruit. It produces tall upright canes. The short fruiting laterals can be challenging to pick, but yields are very good for the fall. It has moderate to good resistance to Phytophthora root rot.
  • Goldie ('Graton Gold', California Plant Patent #7625) and Kiwigold (New Zealand, Plant patent # 11,313) are nearly identical cultivars. They are amber sports of Heritage, similar in all characteristics except fruit color. Fruit blushes pink when fully ripe. Goldie blushes slightly more than Kiwigold.
  • Heritage* (Cornell University-NYSAES) is considered the standard for fall bearing cultivars. These tall, rugged canes have prominent thorns and are very high yielding. The primocane crop ripens relatively late. Fruit is medium-sized and has good color and flavor, firmness, and good freezing quality. It is resistant to most diseases. Due to its late ripening, this cultivar is not recommended for regions with cool summers or a short growing season with frost before September 30.
  • Josephine (JEF-f1, University of Maryland, Plant Patent #12,173) plants are upright and vigorous. Fruit is large with average flavor that ripens mid season. It is resistant to Phytophthora root rot and leafhopper. This is a new release that is relatively untried.
  • Polana (Poland) is a very early season cultivar that ripens 2 weeks before Heritage. It produces short productive canes with multiple laterals per node. The fruit is medium sized fruit with good flavor. Susceptible to verticillium wilt and Phytophthora root rot. It needs extra nitrogen to perform well.
  • Ruby (Cornell University-NYSAES, Plant patent # 7067) is moderately vigorous with good productivity. The primocane crop ripens slightly ahead of Heritage. The fruit is large with a mild flavor. Ruby is moderately susceptible to Phytophthora root rot. The cultivar is suggested for fresh market or shipping in areas with longer growing seasons. It is susceptible to mosaic virus complex and resistant to late yellow rust and powdery mildew.

Greenhouse Production

  • Tulameen* (British Columbia) has been shown to be superior for greenhouse production. It produces very large fruit, and high yields. The fruit is glossy and firm. It is resistant to aphid vector of mosaic virus complex. Plants are not adequately hardy for field production in the Northeast.

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