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Harvest and Care of Fall Raspberries

Sweeten those fall days with a handful of fresh raspberries.  And maximize the flavor and bounty with proper harvesting and care. 

Pick raspberries when they are fully colored, taste sweet and juicy, and easily pull off the core. Pick often to prevent overripe berries collecting on the bushes.  These attract picnic beetles that move in and start feeding on the fresh as well as overripe fruit. 

Continue to water your plantings as needed throughout the picking and post harvest season for healthier plants and flavorful fruit.

Some gardeners choose to prune all the canes back to ground level in late fall or winter.  This eliminates the summer crop, but results in an earlier and larger fall harvest. 

Others leave the canes stand and thin the plants to 4 or 5 canes per foot of row in late winter.  This maintains the summer crop, but reduces disease problems and helps keep these vigorous plants under control.

A bit more information: Make raspberry picking a bit easier.  Cut the top off a gallon milk jug, leaving the handle intact.  Run a rope or belt through the handle and around your waist.  The shallow container is perfect for raspberries and leaves both hands free for picking.  Once full, swap that container for an empty jug and get back to harvesting.  Besides recycling, it is an economical way to create multiple harvest baskets for you and your helpers.

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