Fresh picked raspberries
image by Spakattack/Flickr.com
Install trellises to support planted raspberries. Growing your raspberries on a trellis helps prevent diseases, improves quality of berries and makes harvest time simple. This is typically done at the time of planting or shortly after.
Build T or V type trellises for hedgerow plants. Most red raspberries are grown this way. Hill plantings are often used for purple or black raspberries, and a hill system works best in this situation.
Use a shovel to add 3 to 4 inches of mulch around raspberry plants. Adding mulch will retain moisture in the soil and prevent most weeds.
Pull weeds around your plants. Use a hoe to carefully cultivate around plants for weed removal, if mulch is not used.
Supply at least 1 to 2 inches of water to plants weekly when rainfall is insufficient. Keep all nearby grass at least a foot away from raspberry plants.
Fertilize the plants each year in the beginning of spring and again four to six weeks later. Use fertilizer that is best for your soil conditions. A basic amount and type would be 10 pounds of 10-10-10 for each 1,000 square feet.
Pruning is important for the health of all raspberry plants. Pruning for all types includes getting rid of any diseased or damaged canes at any time. Eliminate every cane that appears in the middle of rows and ones that grow too close to others in the row. Some varieties also need special pruning depending on type and variety of plants, such as ever-bearing (fall-bearing), summer-bearing and red, purple and black.
Harvest raspberries that are easy to remove by hand. Do this during a cool period, such as early morning or evening hours. Place picked raspberries in small shallow containers to avoid crushing berries. Check plants daily and harvest as needed.
Contact your local Extension for help if your raspberries seem to have a disease or a pest problem.