The Walden Effect: Farming, simple living, permaculture, and invention.

Pruning raspberries keeps the bushes in bounds

Black raspberry bushLast summer, I took two minutes to pinch off the tops of my black raspberry and blackberry primocanes (the new shoots coming up that year.)  This topping prompted the brambles to bush out, and the black raspberry harvest this year has been phenomenal.

What started as a single plant two years ago is now a bush six feet long, but narrow enough that I can reach inside and get all the berries without a scratch.  While brambles are very resilient and require nearly no care, I Black raspberry fruitknow that I'm much more inclined to pick the fruits daily if I don't have to crawl inside a sprawling briar patch of rooted canes.

There's no decline in yield resulting from the pruning either.  My black raspberry plant has produced half a gallon of berries in the last week and a half, and more are yet to ripen.  In fact, I've already snipped off the tops of this year's primocanes in hopes of a similar large and easy harvest in 2012.

Our chicken waterer is another great way to make your homesteading job easier.

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About us: Anna Hess and Mark Hamilton spent over a decade living self-sufficiently in the mountains of Virginia before moving north to start over from scratch in the foothills of Ohio. They've experimented with permaculture, no-till gardening, trailersteading, home-based microbusinesses and much more, writing about their adventures in both blogs and books.

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I'm going to have to remember this one!

Does it work on raspberries too?

Comment by Everett Mon Jun 27 10:21:15 2011
This actually is black raspberries, and I've used this technique with great success on both black raspberries and blackberries. I leave my cultivated red raspberries alone in the summer, though, because they don't get tall and bend over (although they do need thinning in the winter to keep the patch from turning into a thicket.)
Comment by anna Mon Jun 27 13:44:24 2011

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