Black Magic blackberry variety

Rating [ 4.5 ]

Good flavor and fruit quality, productive and consistent primocane-fruiting blackberry with uniformed fruit size

Botanical designation

Rubus subgenus Rubus Watson 'Black Magic'

Originated from a cross of

Originated from a cross of APF-12 x Arapaho

Variety denomination

Variety denomination - 'APF-77'

Plants are

Plants are thorny

Bushes have

Bushes have erect canes

Fruit weight is

Fruit weight is 6 g


Berries have a conical shape

Fruiting habit

Fruiting habit - primocane-fruiting (everbearing)

Flowering on floricanes starts in the

Flowering on floricanes starts in the third week of April

Ripening date (regular) -

Ripening date (regular) - second week of June

Blooming on primocanes starts in the

Blooming on primocanes starts in the first week of June

Ripening date (remontant) -

Ripening date (remontant) - second week of August

Productivity is

Productivity is 4 kg per plant

Soluble solids

Soluble solids - 10.2%


Acidity - 0.5%

Cold hardiness is

Cold hardiness is moderate

Heat tolerance is

Heat tolerance is moderate

Country of origin

Country of origin - United States


Patent US PP24,249 P3 dated February 17, 2014

Current status

Current status - cultivated (actual)

Black Magic (APF-77) originated from a hand-pollinated cross of Prime-Jim (APF-12) and Arapaho.
This cultivar is from Arkanzas. Plants of the Black Magic have better flavor and overall fruit quality, larger berry size and are more productive with more intense and consistent primocane-fruiting performance than the parent Prime-Jim, and has the primocane-fruiting trait expression not found in parent Arapaho. Parent Arapaho is thornless while the new cultivar has thorns.
Plants of the Black Magic are vigorous and prolific and row establishment following planting is rapid. Both primocanes and floricanes are erect in growth habit. Primocane fruit and flowers are borne on the cane terminus, and fruiting continues down the primocane during the season. Canes usually attain a length of approximately 120 cm prior to the appearance of flower buds. The number of nodes down the cane that develop flowers is largely dependent on the length and conditions of the late summer to fall growing period, particularly the field temperatures during this period.
The floricane and primocane bloom periods of these plants begin on the same date and averages the same length as Prime-Jim. Floricane fruit of the new cultivar begins ripening at the same time as APF-12 and can extend 10 days later than APF-12 due to the common emergence of basal fruiting canes providing for the more extended fruiting period. Average first ripening date is beginning of June. The average floricane fruiting period is 40-50 days. Average first primocane fruit ripening date is the middle of July. Fruit yields of the cultivar on primocanes is more than Prime-Jim, usually 3 to 4 kg per plant. The fruit is slightly conical in shape, bright glossy black in color, and very attractive. The floricane fruit weight is about 6-7 g. Floricane fruit size of the new cultivar is maintained well throughout the entire harvest season. Primocane fruit of the Black Magic cultivar averaged 4 g. These fruit can be reduced in high air temperatures (30-32C).
The Black Magic variety exhibits excellent fruit fertility with full drupelet set. Floricane fruit and flower clusters are medium-large, cymose, and are mostly borne on the periphery of the plant canopy, providing easy access to harvest. Flower fertility is high and clusters are well filled. The fruit is moderately firm at maturity, comparable to that of APF-12.
Storage potential of fresh fruit of the Black Magic is not acceptable for shipping due to development of reddening of drupes, fruit softening and leakage during storage. The fresh fruit rates very good in flavor, and higher than APF-12. The flavor is sweet and mildly acidic, with a distinct blackberry aroma.

How to cultivate blackberry

How to cultivate blackberry Black Magic?

1. Avoid wet area when planted;
2. Annual pre-emergence and postemergence herbicide applications;
3. Annual spring nitrogen fertilization (56 kg/ha) using ammonium nitrate and additional fertilization with complete fertilizer in early July;
4. Tipping primocanes at 42 inches height two times each season usually in mid-June and late July or early August;
5. Dormant pruning of primocane-fruiting plants must include removing dead floricanes and removing primocane tissue to a point below the fruiting (flowering) area on the primocanes;
6. Dormant pruning of floricane-fruiting plants must include removing dead floricanes and pruning lateral branches to ~0.4 m in length;
7. Use hedgerow training system;
8. Use sun screens and grids. Plants are fertile and abundant unless temperatures at which temperature exceed 30-32 ° C (85-90 ° F) can damage flowers and anthers and pollen production can be reduced;
9. A single application of iron sulfate in late fall and lime sulfur in early spring;
10. The normal practice is cultivating Black Magic in high tunnels. This method allows you to get an earlier harvest.
Diseases resistance

What diseases is blackberry Black Magic resistant to?

Black Magic has very good resistance to diseases such as AnthracnoseOrange Rust
Diseases susceptibility

What diseases is blackberry variety Black Magic vulnerable to?

Black Magic is quite prone to diseases such as Cane Blight
Useful Growing Guides

Useful Growing Guides:

Black Jack
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Black Pearl
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Reviews of the variety Black Magic

Review from [DENNIS]

I purchased five of the Black Magic Blackberry plants for my large fruit garden. I planted them, and they came up very quickly. I was unable to pay very much attention to them due to writing a masters thesis for my college. I must say these plants fared very well in the intense North Carolina heat. This year they quickly sprang back to life and are getting ready to yield a huge amount of blackberries. I have also transplanted about 15 additional plants off of the runners produced by the original plants. I have very sandy soil, but these plants did not seem to mind. I have amended the soil and used fertilizer specifically for blackberries and raspberries. The soil drains very well, and I have mulched around the plants to trap in some of the moisture. After you buy your initial plants you will not need to buy anymore, unless you are looking for a large amount. They are also very easy to propagate on your own from what I have read. I am extremely happy with these plants so far, and I am sure anyone else will be as well.

Review from [ERIKA]

I bought 2 of these in spring 2018. They were small to start but I followed the directions and they produced a small amount weekly of some yummy berries in May and continued though August. I think the AZ heat was a bit much the first year but they kept growing through the summer. By spring of 2019 there were a lot more amazing fruit than the year before. This year I pruned like crazy and had to pull a lot of runners that sprouted out in random places. But, man, there are going to be more berries this year than the 4 of us can eat! So far I have picked 2 cups every other day. I'm going to be leaving them at neighbors' houses soon. The thorns are wicked but we are super careful. We have heavy clay soil with a pH of close to 8. I amended the soil with garden soil twice a year. The summers are 110+ degrees. Despite all of these things, they don't seem to mind and produce super sweet fruit. I would definitely buy again but we don't need to for a while.

Review from [OKIE GARDENER]

Planted black magic last year. The plants grew slowly which is to be expected for their first year. This summer they are producing huge blackberries with wonderful flavor. Definitely recommend.


Planted in the spring shortly after they arrived. 6 months later I have a bumper crop of beautiful berries. Planted in full sun well drained soil. Basically forgot about them other than weeding and watering as needed. I will be purchasing more of these plants. Easy to grow and maintain.

Review from [ZENDOG]

I have a Black Magic from Gurney’s that I’ve gotten a very tasty couple of berries from and I look forward to see how it does this year. I only got a few, since it was dried out and almost dead when received, but it came up from the roots and is doing well in a pot now. This is a thorny variety that I think came out of the Arkansas breeding program and was licensed by Gurneys/HF and there is very little info on them. I believe these were sweeter than others in the program, but wasn’t firm enough for shipping and had thorns so wasn’t a candidate for commercial growers.

They are quite early with their spring berries (ahead of my Navaho and Sisiyou by about a week on flowering at least) and they do have primocane berries as well like a lot of the other Ark berries so berries in the fall as well. One review I saw talks about it surviving and producing in brutal heat and another talked about it fruiting almost non stop when it got going. Of course those are reviews on the retailers site, so we’ll see.

I think this is the first year I’ll get a reasonable number of berries if I protect it from the birds and then I can decide for myself. There is really very little information out there about this variety, so even the bit I know may all be wrong.

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