Pete Tallman

Niwot Double-Cropping Black Raspberry

U.S. Plant Patent Applied For


Site Map

Home   Apples   Blueberries   Black Raspberries   Explorer Black Raspberry   Niwot  Black Raspberry   Contact Info, Links


E-mail: Pete underscore Tallman atsign hotmail dot com

The Niwot raspberry  is a double-cropping black raspberry giving useful production on both floricane (summer) crop and primocane (autumn) crop. Niwot is the first commercial release of a breeding program that uses genetics derived from a chance primocane-fruiting wild black raspberry seedling discovered in 1986 in the Hudson Valley, New York. This picture shows some of the berries of one Niwot primocane on September 8, 2009. Niwot was distributed for evaluation as numbered selection PT2A4. Niwot is being released in the U.S. in 2014, with wide availability expected in 2015.











Niwot is a successor to the Explorer black raspberry, which was found to require an outside pollinator and was therefore not a viable cultivar. The background genetics of Niwot are similar to Explorer, except that the original cross was in the reverse direction, and there is an extra generation in a couple of places in the pedigree of Niwot. Niwot is hardy for at least USDA zones 5 to 7.


Niwot was selected for good production of large primocane fruit and large floricane fruit, and was proven to be self-fruitful. Compared to Explorer, Niwot has larger fruit, higher druplet count, and smaller seeds.  Occasionally, the shape of Niwot berries can tend slightly toward conical to accommodate the high number of druplets. Like Explorer, the primocane-fruiting trait is very reliable. Berries start ripening in late August or early September. Unfortunately, the reduced thorniness seen on Explorer is not present in Niwot.


This pruning guide for primocane-fruiting black raspberries might be useful for use in growing Niwot. The training differs in a few key respects from the pruning guides for standard floricane-only black raspberries.


Pete gave a short presentation about the Niwot black raspberry at the 2014 NARBA meeting. These are the handouts for the presentation. (It’s a big file. Have patience.)


Thanks go to my local Colorado State University Extension agent for the photo below called “Raspberry Trifecta” taken in September 2008. The black raspberries are a mix of Niwot and Explorer, red raspberries are a mix of Autumn Britten and  Polana, and the yellow raspberries are Fall Gold.