A red raspberry, English Thornless is spring bearing with a sweet fruit and canes are thornless. This long lived variety has grown for 30 years at our nursery. It ripens early, just a few days later than black raspberries. Primocanes,(large mature canes) are thornless. You may notice very young growth on our 2 inch to quart pots that may have fuzzy thorns and that's normal. The mature robust growth of the primocanes when planted are thornless. Zone 6-8
|Pest Resistance||Very Good|
|Disease Resistance||Very Good|
|Wet Soil Tolerance||Poor|
|No Spray||Very Good|
|Fresh for Kids||Very Good|
|This information is accurate to the best of our knowledge, comments/opinions are always welcome|
Brambles are perennial plants with a biennial growth and fruiting habit. The perennial part is in a storage root, which has enough cold hardiness to continue above ground growth from year to year. Their biennial part is in the new growth (primocanes) which can over winter flower (floricanes), bear fruit the following season and die after fruiting. This makes it necessary to prune or remove the canes which have produced fruit.
The red raspberry root system develops in the first 4 inches of soil. Roots develop shoot buds in the fall and emerge in spring as floricane. The leader bud produces vigorous canes until the cold weather limits more growth then becomes a floricane in the second year on june-bearing cultivars. Larger and taller canes usually produce more than shorter canes.
Black raspberries, certain purple raspberries and Black raspberries do not spread by underground roots, but tip root from the top of the canes bending towards and into the ground. The canes develop from buds rising up from the crown of the plants. These tip rooted plants can be used to increase the size or length of the bed but can crowd a bed.
Should be a well drained high in humus or organic matter, no less than 2%. The soils should be slightly acid 5.8-6.8PH. They prefer sandy loams with course sands or clays. Trailing types of brambles tolerate heavier clay soil better than other cultivars or species.
Planting can be done year round weather permitting. Plant depth is critical as in other plants. Plant at the same depth they were in the nursery.
Everbearing Red Raspberries: The plants should be 2 to 3 feet apart in rows 5 feet wide.
Mulches are applied from 4-6 inches deep either to the row areas alone or to the whole soil surface. Straw, old hay, sawdust and shavings may be used, but should be weed seed free. Mulch, if needed or desired, should be applied sometime between late fall and early spring when the soil moisture is plentiful.
Berries should be picked when they are firm, but well colored, and mature enough to come away from the core easily.
A plentiful supply of water is especially important from early spring until harvest. As a rough guide, raspberries require 1 inch of water per week from bloom until the end of harvest. Drip irrigation is a great idea. Check for moisture before applying water, if there is sufficient moisture in the first inch of the soil do not water.
Aisle ways are usually sodded and mowed or mulched. Hand weeding is not too difficult if plants are mulched. Weeding is very simple when using the mowing method for Heritage, Caroline, Jaclyn, Anne. Just weed, mulch and compost right after mowing.
Pruning Summer Bearing Red Raspberry Plants: The 2 year canes on the summer bearing cultivars will become weak or die after fruiting. These canes should be pruned individually in fall or early spring before new growth emerges. Prune the cane so the cut is even or just above ground level. Some cultivars are very vigorous growers and vigor will also depend on climate, soil conditions and fertility. So if the planting bed looks as though it could be too crowded with new shoots, prune the new suckers early before growth is over 6 inches tall. The height of the canes should range between 4 to 5 feet, so if they are taller just tip the canes back when chest high in the growing season.
Pruning everbearing raspberry Fruits of the fall bearing cultivars are produced on the tops of the first year canes or primocanes. Most gardeners and growers aim for a fall crop on these bushes although a summer crop can be produced as well. To produce a fall crop the canes should be mowed or cut at ground level. Pruning should be done with a sickle bar or an instrument that will produce a clean cut. To eliminate most diseases the canes should be taken away from the planting. Pruning in this manner should be done no earlier than late winter, no later than when new growth starts to emerge. Canes that produced on their tops in the fall will produce on the same cane below where they produced the previous fall if the canes are not mowed. So, a cane grows up, produces fruit on its top, goes dormant and fruits the following spring.
Pruning Purple and Black Raspberry Plants: These types of brambles do not multiply plants in the row like the reds do, the plants grow as individuals and will produce shoot growth from buds that are formed near the base of the plant. Pruning should be done in the fall and early spring. A two year can produces the fruit and after it fruits the cane becomes weak or dies, so eliminate the cane by cutting it at the base of the plant. Any 1 year canes that are long and falling over because of shoot length should be pruned to a 2 to 3 foot height, depending upon the diameter of the cane. Do not let too many branches grow in the plant because they will crowd each other out and create weak shoot growth. If black raspberry canes bend over and their tips touch the ground, they will root.
To keep your raspberry bed healthy and productive follow these few simple steps. Every year clean up the bed of weeds. Add mulch or compost. Keep beds at a comfortable width by hoeing or tilling.
Blackberries and Raspberries made easy
The word bed connotes what you sleep on. But it also describes where one's raspberries or blackberries thrive. Beds we sleep on come in twin, double, queen and king and the terms defines size. The size and width of a garden bed is most important for the plants "comfort" as well. Over the years I've planted a lot of fruiting plants and I have some very good tips about starting a raspberry or blackberry bed. Saving time and labor, not only in the first year, but future years as well.
Most of us have yards that have grass. Usually it's more convenient to concentrate garden beds as close to the kitchen or home as possible. So, that usually means the yard. At our home we have a long garden about 130' long and 30' wide. The top part we've never used and I mow the grass there. It grows thick and is mostly field grass or fescue.
For a few years I'd mow this 80' x 30' area thinking I'd like to plant varieties of blackberry and raspberry that we sell, that aren't included in the orchard at Edible. I hesitated for a few years since we have so much growing at the nursery. I needed the bed to take care of itself or it might end up a weedy area with dismal results.
One day I started to mow on a low cut setting about 80'x 10' section of the unused garden. The ground was easy to work and I tilled the middle of the 80' length about 2" to 4" deep. I didn't till the whole 10' width, just the middle 5'. The mowing and tilling took about 2 hours. I enriched the soils organic matter by adding old potting soil to the tilled area. (We keep old soil in a huge pile at the nursery). I'd come home with a few buckets and drive over to the area and dump the buckets after work. I added about 2" of this soil to the surface of the tilled area. The next 2 steps, weed cloth and mulching are where I've really saved time over the years. I rolled 3' wide x 100' long weed barrier cloth on both sides of the 5' wide bed. 8" staples are tamped down with a hammer every few feet to fasten the weed cloth tight to the ground. I squared off the ends of the bed too with the cloth.
This has kept the grass from entering my bed over the years. When I mow around this bed now, I put my mower deck on the highest position to make sure the blades don't grab the fabric. But I'm ahead of myself here. I planted 3 Wyeberry about 5' apart. Then 3 Kiowa blackberry about 5' apart, 3 Triple Crown blackberry 5' apart, 3 Heritage red raspberries about 3' apart. I did this around September. After planting I pitch forked hard wood mulch about 3" deep the length and width of the 5' bed. (about 2 pickup loads).
The following year the plants grew and I'd do a little weeding after a rain but the mulch kept that chore to a minimum.
I added some support stakes about 5' high on the inside running edge on both sides of the weed barrier cloth for the Wyeberry and blackberries, with a wire attached at the top running from 1 pole to the next. When finished, they had the shape of 3 sets of parallel bars with the plants in the middle.
The Heritage did not need any trellis. For the past few years I don't spend a lot of time on the upkeep. In the fall I'll take out the old dead canes that fruited and clean up the beds generally.
The Wyeberry is first to ripen. Kiowa starts to ripen a little before Triple Crown but they overlap too. Heritage has been harvested July thru August at this writing, ripening a few weeks after the Wyeberries started to ripen and past the blackberries.
I spend more time picking the fruit than upkeep. The yields are eaten fresh and we're able to freeze a lot for winter use. Plus, I've learned more about these varieties. I hope this helps your planning and planting practices with raspberries and blackberries.