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Summer Pruning of Raspberries

A bit of summer pruning goes a long way to keeping your raspberries healthy and productive.  So get out the mosquito netting, long sleeves and pruners and get busy. 

Summer and everbearing raspberries bear fruit on 2-year-old canes.   Remove these canes to ground level once your harvest is made.  They will not produce more fruit and their presence can increase the risk of insect and disease problems.  This is also a good time to remove any damaged, insect-infested or discolored canes. Summer pruning increases air flow and light penetration, resulting in healthier plants and a better harvest next season.

Fall and everbearing raspberries form fruit on first year canes.  You can manage these for a fall crop only.  Wait until the dormant season and then cut the whole planting back to ground level.  Or follow the guidelines for summer bearing raspberries if you want your everbearing raspberries to produce both summer and fall crops.

A bit more information:  Don’t let a lack of space keep you from growing raspberries.  The new compact and thornless Shortcake raspberry is great for a container or small space.  You may not be freezing a large harvest, but you’ll be able to enjoy fresh-from-the-garden raspberries even in your small space.

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