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How To Grow Raspberries


Raspberry. Both the red and black raspberries are essentials of a good garden. A few plants of each will produce a supply of berries for a family through six or eight weeks, provided both early and late varieties are planted.

A cool situation, soil that will hold moisture without being wet, and thorough preparation of the ground, are the conditions necessary to success. The blackcap raspberries should be set 3 to 4 feet apart, the rows 6 or 7 feet; the red varieties 3 feet apart, the rows 5 feet apart. Spring setting is usually preferable.

The shoots of raspberries sent up one season fruit and die the following year, as in blackberries and dewberries.

Most of the blackcap varieties naturally throw out side branches the first season, and with such it is a good plan to pinch back the new canes as soon as they have reached a height of 2 to 3 feet, according to the full height of the variety. This will hasten the throwing out of side shoots, upon which fruit will be borne the following year. As soon as severe freezing weather is over in the spring, these side shoots should be cut back 9 to 12 inches, according to the strength of the canes and the number of side branches upon them.

The same method of pruning is advisable with red varieties like Cuthbert, which naturally branch freely. Other sorts, like King, Hansell, Marlboro, Turner, and Thwack, that seldom branch, should not be pinched back in summer, as, even though this might induce them to send out shoots, the branches will be weak, and if they survive the winter, will produce less fruit than would the strong buds upon the main canes had they not been forced into growth.

As soon as the crop has been gathered, and the old canes are dead, they should be removed, and at the same time all of the surplus new shoots should be cut away. From four to five good canes will be sufficient for each hill, while in rows the number may be from two to three in each foot.

Pruned in this way, nearly all varieties will have stems sufficiently large to support themselves, but as there will be more or less breaking down and injury to the fruit from the bending over of the canes, many growers prefer to support them by means of stakes or trellises. Stakes may be set in each hill, or for matted rows stout stakes 3 feet high are driven at intervals of 40 feet and a No. 10 galvanized wire is stretched along the row, to which the canes are tied. It would be a saving of labor if a wire is stretched either side of the row, as then no tying will be required.

If it is desired to secure new plants, the ends of the branches of the black varieties should be covered with soil about the middle of August, when the tips are seen to divide into several slender shoots, and to take root, these can be taken up and planted the following spring. While the suckers that spring from the roots of red varieties may be used in propagating them, it will be better to use plants grown from root-cuttings, as they will have much better roots.

Raspberries may be bent over to the ground so that the snow will protect them, in severe climates.

Varieties of Raspberries

Of the black sorts the following will be found desirable: Palmer, Conrath, Kansas, and Eureka, which ripen in the order named. In some sections the Gregg is still valuable, but it is somewhat lacking in hardiness. Ohio is a favorite variety for evaporating. Of the purple-cap varieties, Shaffer and Columbian generally succeed. Among the red varieties none are more universally successful than Cuthbert. King is a promising early variety, and Loudon is a valuable late kind. Many growers find Marlboro and Turner well worthy of cultivation, although rather local in their adaptations; while for home use, Golden Queen, a yellow Cuthbert, is much liked.

d taking young plants from diseased plantations. Remove all old canes and badly diseased new ones as soon as the fruit is gathered. Although spraying with bordeaux, 5-5-50, will control the malady, the treatment may not be profitable. If spraying seems advisable, make the first application when the new canes are 6 to 8 in. high and follow with two more at intervals of 10 to 14 days.

Raspberry Diseases

Cane-blight or wilt is a destructive disease affecting both red and black varieties. Fruiting canes suddenly wilt and die. It is caused by a fungus which attacks the cane at some point and kills the bark and wood, thereby causing the parts above to die. No successful treatment is known. In making new settings, use only plants from healthy plantations. Remove the fruiting canes as soon as the fruit is gathered.

Red-rust is often serious on black varieties, but does not affect red ones. It is the same as red rust of blackberry. Dig up and destroy affected plants.