Raspberries

raspberryIf you live in a cooler climate, you’re in luck!  Raspberries thrive in a diversity of locations from zones 2-9. Follow these simple instructions and enjoy the sweet taste of Raspberry success.

Location:

Choose a location that offers full sun and gives the Raspberries good air circulation.  Areas that encounter high winds can pose a threat to the canes and should be avoided.  Also, be sure there are no wild blackberries growing nearby which could spread diseases that can prove harmful to your plant.  The soil should be nutrient dense and well-draining.

Planting Instructions:

  1. If possible, plant your Raspberries early in the spring.  If you live in a warmer area of the country plant in late winter.

  2. A week before you plant, prepare the soil with compost or aged manure.

  3. rasp2Soak the roots for an hour or two before planting to ensure proper moisture.

  4. Dig a hole that provides enough room for the roots to spread out.

  5. For multiple plants, space Raspberries about 3 feet apart, in rows 8 feet apart.

  6. A trellis or a fence can provide extra support for growth. If you chose to use this option, do it from the beginning of planting so the plants are not disturbed when maturing.

Watering:

Water your Raspberry plant at a rate of 1 inch of water per week.  Increase water as necessary during dry periods but do not overwater.

Pruning:

Prune Raspberries in the fall, leaving about 6 of the thickest, strongest green canes.  Make sure you cut off any sideways growing canes.

Fertilizer:

You can use compost with a small amount of balanced organic fertilizer, applying late in the winter.  It’s also a good idea to spread mulch in the planting area to maintain moisture and discourage weed growth.

Pests:

Raspberries are not prone to many diseases but are susceptible to powdery mildew.  The fungus can rob Raspberries of vital nutrients and weaken the plant.  The disease looks like a dusting of flour and usually starts off in circular white spots.  If left untreated, the plant’s leaves will begin to yellow and dry out.  To treat, remove all infected leaves/fruit and make sure never to use these parts as compost.  Use a fungicide which contains sulfur, neem oil or potassium bicarbonate.

raspTips:

  • If you don’t want to trellis your Raspberries, just let them grow in a slightly arched position so they have ample room as the fruit ripens.
  • Prune away the shoots that grow up from the roots as well as old or damaged canes which will better enable the surviving canes to produce lots of berries.