Blackberry bushes are self-fertile and will have good blackberry fruit production on their own. For even heavier fruit production, plant a second variety is planted nearby. Upright or erect blackberry bushes should be planted 3 to 5 feet apart in full sun. Plant in soil with a pH level of 6.0 to 6.5 with the crown (where the root system begins) no more than 1/2 inch below the ground's surface. New growth during the first year planted will be the canes that produce flowers and fruit the following growing season. Blackberry plants generally begin producing fruit within 2 to 3 years.