If you are looking for something sweet tasting and easy to grow, you may want to try planting raspberries. Raspberry plants grow wild in the woods, and compete with weeds and other plant-life successfully. Though you will find that wild raspberries are smaller than those growing in a backyard garden. This is do to them having to compete for the sunlight, vitamins and minerals they need to survive.
With a little bit of care and maintenance, you can easily grow plump juicy raspberries right in your backyard.
Choose a sunny location for your raspberry patch, a little light shade is ok if you have to. Raspberries can grow in poor soils, but will produce better in soil that is rich in organic matter. Mixing in plenty of compost, well-rotted manure, and/or hummus into your soil will greatly benefit your raspberry crop.
Raspberries are commonly grown in rows about 2 feet in width. If you are growing more than one row, leave about 4 feet of space between rows to give yourself some elbow room when it comes time to harvest. Plant your new canes in the center of your row, and three feet apart. Raspberries send out suckers that will fill in the space in between. They spread quite fast, one cane planted this year can easily become 6 – 12 next year.
Raspberries will eventually spread out of the rows and into the pathways. You’ll want to chop these down so your pathway doesn’t become overrun with raspberry canes. This can also be prevented by growing your rows in raised beds, keep in mind that runners are sent underground. Your raised bed should be at least 20 inches high to prevent the runners escaping under the border.
The great thing about raspberry plants is that once your patch is established it doesn’t require a lot of attention. You don’t want the patch getting too thick, raspberry bushes are prone to fungal disease so you want to thin out the patch some every year. Thinning the patch will allow for better air circulation which will help prevent fungal disease.
Raspberries are biennials, meaning they only fruit on second year canes. After fruiting these canes die and should be removed shortly after harvesting allowing new suckers to grow for next years harvest.