How to care for raspberry canes

Asked August 14, 2020, 5:44 PM EDT

How to care for raspberry canes? I was given several thornless raspberry canes a few years ago, and this year they produced loads of berries, so I was thrilled. However, they had multiplied considerably, and are not in the best location. I had cut them all back a few days ago, leaving in approximately 5 inch stem so I could see where they are for now. I noticed that Some of the stems were green and some of the stems were brown, if this is relevant. The fruit appeared around June, And they have been turning brown for a while. I went online and saw that there are two varieties, in the sense of when they produce fruit. Mine fruited in spring, And do not produce more fruit in fall. So I have two questions: 1 I would like to move these raspberry plants to another location. When is the right time to do so, and what else do I need to know about moving them? 2 did I make an error in cutting these back 5 inches from the ground this week? What is the correct way to treat raspberry canes after they have a fruited in spring? If there any other things that you feel would be helpful for me to know about getting the most out of my raspberry plants, I would be very grateful to learn more. Thank you very much for your help. Sincerely, Anne-Louise Vernon

Multnomah County Oregon

3 Responses

Here is the OSU Extension article on caring for raspberries (and blackberries) that may answer your questions, and help you decide what you what to do: https://catalog.extension.oregonstate.edu/ec1306/html


The specific questions I have regarding raspberries, were not specifically addressed in the basic article you to which referred, as far as I could see.

1 I would like to move these summer fruiting raspberry plants to another location. When is the right time to do so, and what else do I need to know about moving them?

2 Did I make an error in cutting these summer fruiting raspberries back 5 inches from the ground this week? (original email query August 14, 2020)

Additionally:

3) What is the correct way to treat raspberry canes after they have a fruited in spring?


Thank you.

Hello Ms. Vernon,

Raspberries are tasty and easy to grow at home. Raspberries and blackberries are cane berries. Most, including June fruiting raspberries, send up canes in a 2-year cycle. They send up new primoicanes each year which leaf out and send nutrients down to the root crown. The stems of floricanes are green. They don't flower or fruit. The second year these canes do produce flowers and berries and are known as fruiting canes. They die back at the end of the season,. They can and should be removed then. At this point the stems are brown. They can be removed after they have fruited, but leaving them until late summer, early fall allows them to contribute to the nutrient stores in the root crown. Meanwhile, this year's floricanes (next year's fruiting canes) should have grown up over the summer. Once you have cut the fruiting canes back to the base you are left with the floricanes, and can tie them to your supports, ready for next year's berry crop..

At this point I would remove the brown stemmed (fruiting canes) shoots to the base. Let the green stemmed (floricanes) grow. Your raspberry plants will be fine, but having cut the floricanes back to 5 inches, you may not get much of a crop next year.

You can move your raspberry plants now into fall, or wait until spring. Dig up as much of the crowns as possible. Raspberries like full sun. Avoid sites where potatoes, tomatoes, peppers, eggplants or other cane berries or strawberries have grown within the last few years as diseases and insects that infest raspberries are carried by these crops. Raspberry plants, once established, will produce well for more than 15 years. Raspberries need very good drainage with a pH of 5.5-6.5. You can check the drainage by digging a hole where you plan to plant your raspberries. Fill the hole with water and watch how quickly the water is absorbed. Raised beds 1.5 to 2.0 feet high and wide can be a great help if your drainage is poor. Walls are fine, but not necessary. Organic material also helps with drainage. A good source of organic matter is a cover of 2-4 inches of organic mulch (wood chips, bark, compost, leaf mold, etc) which discourages weeds by blocking sunlight and also by covering the soil helps decrease soil surface evaporation and keeps the roots cooler. As it is broken down by soil organisms it adds organic material to the soil at a slow constant rate. Space your plants about 2 feet apart in rows 8 feet apart.

This article has excellent information on many aspects of growing raspberries at home, Growing Raspberries in the Home Garden https://catalog.extension.oregonstate.edu/ec1306/html. Please let us know if you have any further questions.