A new star may be rising in Oregon’s blackberry fields

The next great Oregon blackberry may be growing in the demonstration plots at Oregon State University’s North Willamette Research and Extension Station.

Chad Finn, the USDA breeder who developed it, named it Columbia Star — a nod to Oregon and Washington and the river they share, and to its quality.

Time will tell, as it always does with plant breeding. But if it takes off, as Finn believes likely, Columbia Star may surpass the venerable Marion, which since introduction in 1956 has become the most widely planted blackberry cultivar in the world.

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