Growing Raspberries

Raspberries are grouped into two types; summer fruiting and autumn fruiting.  These two groups are distinct in their growth habits and have different training and pruning requirements.  By growing varieties from each group it is possible to have a supply of raspberries from mid-summer to mid-autumn.

Recommended varieties

Summer fruiting; Glen Ample

Autumn Fruiting; Autumn Bliss

 Planting

Planting is the same for both groups.  Raspberries like rich, slightly acidic soil.  Enrich the soil with organic matter (Westland tree and shrub compost) prior to planting.  Avoid using mushroom compost as this contains lime.    Ideally run raspberries in rows north-south.

Tip – eliminate all perennial weeds, especially bindweed from an area prior to planting.

 At Fairweather’s we sell bundles of bare root raspberries for planting in the early spring.  Dig a wide trench so that the roots can be spread out.  Place the plants at 45-60cm apart and make the rows around 1.5m apart.

Tip – it is to be expected that your raspberry canes will start to decline after about seven years.  It is best to replace them and if possible relocate the row.

 Support

Construct your support system at the time of planting or before.

Summer raspberries will require a single line of posts and three tiers of wires.

Autumn raspberries grow more prolifically and it is more a case of corralling them in.  Construct a double line of posts (50cm apart) with three tiers of wire or rope.

Feeding

For really good crops and to keep your raspberry plants going apply a slow release fertiliser in the early spring.  We would recommend Growmore or Fish Blood and Bone.  Mulch the row after feeding.

Watering

A bigger yield will be achieved if the raspberry plants are kept moist during fruit set.  In Patrick’s Patch we install a drip line along the rows to deliver water direct to the roots.  Overhead watering is not recommended as it can encourage fungal diseases as well as being more wasteful.

Pruning

Summer-fruiting raspberries.  The fruit is borne on short spurs or laterals on wood that was produced the previous summer.  Cut out canes which have fruited in the autumn.  Secure the new canes to the wires.

13Autumn-fruiting raspberries.  The fruit is borne on canes which grow in the same year.  Cut down to the ground all the old canes in February.  This will stimulate the growth of new canes.

 

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