Fall Creek Farm And Nursery’s Brazelton Berries Tailored For Backyard Growing

Never underestimate the power of a school vacation to inspire a lifelong passion in the mind and heart of a child. That’s exactly what happened to Dave Brazelton who, at age 14, visited and worked on a cousin’s 1,000-acre New Hampshire low-bush blueberry farm one summer.

 

 

The joy and intrigue he felt with the berries and their production continued with Brazelton throughout his teens, and he eventually went on to found Fall Creek Farm and Nursery in Lowell, Ore., with his wife Barbara in 1978. Over the years, Brazelton’s childhood fascination has blossomed into the world’s largest blueberry nursery stock provider.

“My parents were always fascinated with blueberries,” says Amelie Brazelton Aust, Dave and Barbara’s daughter and a co-owner in the business. “Starting the farm was a big learning curve for them, as they knew little about retail and wholesale blueberry production. But it was their passion in making blueberries better that propelled them to establish the nursery stock business and a breeding program. That was a move that came straight from the heart.”

An eagerness to share their own production knowledge, data and successes with select varieties led Brazelton to supply blueberry stock plants for both commercial fruit production and for the nursery trade. In the 1990s, Fall Creek began teaming with both U.S. and international berry breeding programs to develop and evaluate new varieties for commercial and home nursery uses.

Today, Fall Creek is very much a family-owned and run business, with strong interests in berry research and production cropping up in the Brazeltons’ second generation. Son Cort oversees Fall Creek’s international business development, daughter Amelie manages the company’s new product development and son-in-law Boris Aust, a banker from Germany, is the company’s CFO. With this family dynamic, it seems only natural that Fall Creek’s new offerings are taking a family-oriented direction.

The BrazelBerries Collection

Fall Creek and the Brazelton family have made it their mission to breed and supply premium berry varieties for commercial growers and the nursery trade, yet the fate of the finished fruit product was never far from anyone’s mind.

“Everyone loves berries,” Aust says. “We always understood that we were breeding more than just plants — we were breeding food, too. Several years ago we started asking ourselves, ‘What do berry lovers need? How can we help those who want to grow berries at home? How can we create varieties that will be successful in the backyard or even in a patio container?’”

Aust says Fall Creek went to work with its breeding program partners to develop new, innovative berry varieties specifically for the home gardener about a decade ago. Among tens of thousands of seedlings, the operation discovered its initial inspiration.

Characteristics that were compact, colorful and downright beautiful started popping up, and the team began to clarify its vision for what berries could become. Eventually, three pillars were developed to guide the breeding over the next decade: the varieties had to be easy to grow and aesthetically beautiful and produce an abundance of great-tasting fruit.

The BrazelBerries Collection of plants was born. The first collection contained four different varieties of blueberries and raspberries:

Raspberry Shortcake: The first of its kind, Raspberry Shortcake is a thornless dwarf raspberry plant that will thrive on the patio or in the garden.

Peach Sorbet: This compact blueberry has stunning leaves ranging from peach to pink to orange to emerald green. It turns a rich eggplant purple in winter.

Jelly Bean: This little blueberry wonder is prolific, producing a bumper crop of large, flavorful blueberries mid-summer with super-sweet flavor reminiscent of homemade blueberry jelly.

Blueberry Glaze: This boxwood-looking blueberry bush with glossy, dark-green leaves produces bundles of small, nearly black, intensely flavored berries.

More varieties are coming through the BrazelBerries pipeline, each promising homegrown goodness.

Good For The Whole Family

While the love of berries runs in the Brazelton family blood, they are also aware that berries are good for the body. New health research is finding that berries have beneficial effects on conditions such as Alzheimer’s, diabetes and vision ailments, and more positive health benefits continue to arrive with new research. Moreover, berries taste great and are fun for kids of all ages to eat fresh. They are good for you and good tasting —  a winning combination.

“Americans are striving to eat healthier and to incorporate more healthy and fresh foods into their diets on a daily basis,” Aust says. “We are so proud to be able to offer something that can help American families accomplish this with these friendly little berry bushes right outside their back doors, which are simple to grow and within easy reach. Reach outside to grab some raspberries for the morning yogurt or pancakes for the kids, or pick some blueberries in the evening to add to lemonade or sparkling water.”

It’s all possible in our own backyards, thanks to Dave Brazelton and his summer vacation.

Topics:

Leave a Reply

More From Varieties...
Gaillardia x grandiflora 'Arizona Apricot'

February 25, 2015

National Garden Bureau Designates 2015 As Year Of The Gaillardia

Gaillardia, also known as the blanket flower, is a member of the sunflower family (Asteraceae) and a long-blooming pollinator plant. It is fitting that the National Garden Bureau has specified 2015 as The Year of the Gaillardia.

Read More
IPPS Sharing Plant Production Knowledge Globally Logo

February 25, 2015

International Plant Propagators Western Region Sets Annual Meeting Date

The annual meet for the International Plant Propagators' Society (IPPS) Western Region has been set for this September. It will take place September 23 to 26 in Modesto, Calif., and will include learning sessions, tours to local nurseries, a research poster display and poster presentations, various networking opportunities and an awards banquet to close the event.

Read More
Evolvulus Blue My Mind

February 24, 2015

Blue Ribbon Bloomers For Greenhouse Production

Grow what consumers want! Surveys show that blue is one of the top preferred colors of today’s consumers. Here are twelve top recommended blue-flowering Proven Winners annuals and perennials to suit your spring production cycle.

Read More
Latest Stories
Gaillardia x grandiflora 'Arizona Apricot'

February 25, 2015

National Garden Bureau Designates 2015 As Year Of The G…

Gaillardia, also known as the blanket flower, is a member of the sunflower family (Asteraceae) and a long-blooming pollinator plant. It is fitting that the National Garden Bureau has specified 2015 as The Year of the Gaillardia.

Read More

February 18, 2015

California Spring Trials Sneak Peek: New Annuals For 20…

If you're like us and you can't wait until the 2015 California Spring Trials to see some of the new genetics that will be hitting the market in 2016, never fear. We contacted the breeders who will be displaying their new varieties in California in April, and they gave us a sneak peek. Check out our slideshow to see some of the new annuals making their debut to the trade this spring.

Read More
Athena Brazil Salvia 'Brazilian Purple'

February 18, 2015

ForemostCo And Athena Brazil Unite To Supply Unrooted P…

ForemostCo, Inc. and Athena Brazil have forged a working relationship to support each other in the unrooted perennial cuttings market for North America. The partnership, geared toward accommodating increasing demand for unrooted perennial cuttings in North America, adds diversity to a recently consolidated market.

Read More

February 17, 2015

Poinsettias Had Their Best Year In Many In 2014

Poinsettia growers report a strong year in 2014, thanks to a few conditions. Growers were encouraged by high plant quality, enthusiastic shoppers and a stronger, less saturated market for poinsettias throughout the selling season. Seasonal cold at just the right time put consumers in a festive mood to buy early and often, and with no big snowstorms to hold up shipments and a reduction of supply available in the market, the season was strong from start to finish.

Read More
Geranium x cantabrigiense 'Biokovo'

February 17, 2015

Geranium Hybrid ‘Biokovo’ Dubbed 2015 Peren…

Geranium xcantabrigiense ‘Biokovo,' a naturally occurring hybrid of G. dalmaticum and G. macrorrhizum, is the Perennial Plant Association's top pick for 2015 Perennial of the Year. Learn why this tough, landscape geranium took home the prize.

Read More
Costa Farms' Season Premier 2015

February 4, 2015

Costa Farms’ 2015 Season Premier Reveals Newest V…

The annual Season Premier at Costa Farms in Miami, Fla., is the industry's very first peek at new varieties for debut the following year, even before the California Spring Trials, heralded widely as the jumping off point for new varieties. This year's event revealed breeders' best and brightest new varieties for 2016, shown in field trials, landscape trials and containers at Costa Farms tropical trial gardens. Plant breeders presented their new varieties to buyers and members of Lowe’s grower panel. Growers, brokers and other allied industry members, including Home Depot growers and buyers, were also able to peruse the grounds to see how the new varieties fared in the winter trials. Later this season, the hot and humid conditions at Costa’s summer trials will help identify the true performers.

Read More

January 28, 2015

All-America Selections Introduces Additional 2015 Winne…

All-America Selections has announced more 2015 AAS Winners, bringing the grand total of introductions for the 2015 gardening year to 25. The seven winners join the 12 announced last November and six announced last July. This year, AAS has had the most winners in one year since 1939.

Read More

January 28, 2015

Holiday Plant Trends And New Varieties

Growers had mixed feelings about the 2014 poinsettia season according to Greenhouse Grower's 2014 Poinsettia Survey. Read about their plans for 2015 and stay up to date on 14 of the newest cyclamen and poinsettia varieties on the market.

Read More

January 21, 2015

Pantone Marsala Plants To Grow In 2015 [Slideshow]

Marsala, an earthy wine-red color, is the Pantone Color of the Year for 2015, and it presents a great marketing opportunity to showcase Marsala-colored plants for outdoor and indoor decorating. Enjoy this round-up of plants with Marsala hues.

Read More

January 14, 2015

Liven Up Indoor And Outdoor Living With 24 New Tropical…

Uniquely colored foliage and vivid blooms are just two of the great features new tropicals and foliage plants add to energize indoor and outdoor spaces.

Read More

January 13, 2015

Take Purdue University’s Survey On Vegetatively P…

Do you have problems callusing or rooting vegetatively propagated perennials? The Purdue University Floriculture Lab would like to help you with these problems, but first the research team there needs your help.

Read More
Poinsettia 'Charon Red'

January 6, 2015

Dan Schantz Farm 2014 Poinsettia Trial Recap And 2015 D…

The 2014 Dan Schantz Poinsettia trials featured more than 170 poinsettia varieties. Here's a summary of the event, as well as a 2015 date for your calendar.

Read More

December 31, 2014

Engage Busy Consumers With Modern-Day Tropical And Foli…

Contemporary tropical and foliage plants fit right in with the hustle and bustle of the twenty-first century. Their versatility lends itself to countless uses both inside the house and out on the patio.

Read More

December 30, 2014

2015 California Spring Trials Are Just Around The Corn…

Are the California Spring Trials on your schedule for 2015? Before the busy growing season sidelines your plans, use this handy resource to get a jumpstart on registering for your trip.

Read More

December 29, 2014

Top 5 Slideshows Of 2014

These popular slideshows from 2014 highlight everything from new perennials, to new veggies, to California Spring Trials.

Read More

December 29, 2014

Suntory Makes Spirits Bright With Princettia Displays

Suntory Flowers started to introduce its varieties to sister company Beam Suntory by collaborating on a holiday interiorscape featuring Princettia at Beam Suntory's offices in Deerfield, Ill., near Chicago.

Read More

December 17, 2014

Small-Size Plant Varieties For Small-Scale Gardens [Sli…

Miniature and dwarf-sized varieties are perfect for containers, small-scale outdoor gardens and miniature gardening. See what breeders and growers have to offer in new varieties and past favorites.

Read More

December 17, 2014

Plant Ratings From 2014 Trials Now Available In Plant T…

Now that North American trial grounds have completed their 2014 trialing season, the National Plant Trials Database has more than 15,000 plant ratings for the horticulture industry’s use in planning for 2015.

Read More