This is a description of various berry plants and fruiting bushes and vines I grow in my garden in Melbourne’s South East, Australia. My soil is very sandy. The front yard is North facing so it received full sun and sometimes strong winds up to about 60km/h. I’ve mulched both the back yard and front yard a couple of years ago, but the side yard is mostly grassy. I have a total of 37 fruit and nut trees (3 more planned) as well as many other food producing plants.

Raspberry

Raspberry grows like a weed and requires no maintenance other than cutting them back close to the ground every winter. My raspberry canes fruit twice a year, early and late summer. Try to keep the birds away if you plan to grow raspberries. I covered them with a net last year. It was easy enough to do because they’re close to my side fence.

Problems: Birds

Fruit: Plenty in spring and autumn

Boysenberry, Loganberry, etc.

All very vigorous and prolific fruiters in my garden. No need to do anything except prune back in winter. I recommend not letting ripe berries drop to the ground because they will attract insects which will then attack the berries you want to eat.

Problems: Birds and bugs

Fruit: Prolific spring and autumn

Strawberry

Grows well, spreads well, fruits well. Keep the snails and birds away if you can. It’s also a good idea to dig up the plants to separate them and spread them out every season. Otherwise they get too crowded and won’t produce as much. Do this early spring just when they start to grow after winter. Water them if they look like they need it, especially if they’re in hot sun.

Problems: Birds and snails

Fruit: Pretty good when it has enough water

Midgin Berry

An Australian native that actually tastes edible, although not great. They’re small white berries with black dots. Mine died of drought and then came back to life briefly before dying again; this time permanently. Full sun is probably going to be bad for it unless it’s well watered.

Chilean or Cherry Guava

I have one in the front yard, and one that I moved into a large pot to the back yard. The one in the front yard has been there for about three years now and never had any fruit. Some seems to be growing now, so fingers crossed. The one in the pot has done better, grown bigger, and produced fruit throughout winter. I guess it just needs a bit of water every now and then, which the one in the front yard doesn’t get.

Problems: None

Fruit: As long as I water it, it fruits

Cape GooseberryCape Gooseberry

In the winter months when nothing else seems to fruit, the cape gooseberry comes to the rescue! In spring, I cut it back and it’s now growing better than ever. It’s in a reasonably wet spot next to a roof with no gutter so it gets a good soaking every time it rains. The soil is very sandy. The fruit texture is similar to tomato.

Problems: Earwigs sometimes get into the cape.

Fruit: Prolific all year round

Kiwiberry

This is a new plant I’m trying and haven’t had any fruit yet. Updates to follow.