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 Rubus subsp. var.  
Raspberries (Rubus Idaeus).jpg
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Rosaceae > Rubus var. ,

The Raspberry or Red Raspberry (Rubus idaeus) is a plant that produces a tart, sweet, red composite fruit in summer or early autumn. In proper botanical language, it is not a berry at all, but instead an aggregate fruit of numerous drupelets around a central core. In raspberry and other species of the subgenus Idaeobatus, the drupelets separate from the core when picked, leaving a hollow fruit, whereas in blackberry the drupelets stay attached to the core.

It typically grows in forest clearings or fields, particularly where fire or wood-cutting has produced open space for colonization by this opportunistic colonizer of disturbed soil. The raspberry flower can be a major nectar source for honeybees. As a cultivated plant in moist temperate regions, it is easy to grow and has a tendency to spread unless cut back.

Two types are commercially available: the wild-type summer bearing, that produces an abundance of fruit on second-year canes within a relatively short period in midsummer, and double- or "ever"-bearing plants, which also bear a few fruit on first-year canes in the autumn, as well as the summer crop on second-year canes. Raspberries can be cultivated from USDA plant hardiness zones 3 to 9.

Leaves of the raspberry cane are used fresh or dried in herbal and medicinal teas. The leaves have an astringent flavour and in herbal medicine are reputed to be effective in regulating menses. Leaves are found in groups of 3 or 5 and the undersides are silver-white in color. Blackberries have similar looking leaves but the undersides are green.

Raspberries contain significant amounts of polyphenol antioxidants, chemicals linked to promoting endothelial and cardiovascular health. Xylitol, a sugar alcohol alternative sweetener, can be extracted from raspberries.

Raspberries are grown for two reasons: for the fresh market and for commercial processing. Traditionally raspberries were a late summer crop, but with new technology, varieties and innovations, raspberries can be enjoyed all year-round. Raspberries need a lot of sun and ample amounts of water in order to develop to their fullest. Escaped raspberries frequently appear as garden weeds, spread by seeds found in the excrement of birds.


Raspberries are normally started in the winter from dormant canes. These should be planted 1m apart in fertile, well drained soil. Prepare the soil before planting by digging deeply and incorporate plenty of organic matter, such as compost.

In the first year, remove all flowers to allow the plant to build up reserves and to grow bigger. From the second year, previous year's canes will flower in the spring and the fruit will ripen in the summer. Water and feed well in the spring and summer, but decrease water and food in the autumn. This will harden the canes to survive the winter.

In the winter, prune out old flowered canes, down to the ground level. Of the new canes, remove all small and weak ones. Remove ones that are growing too close to each other - allow around 10-15cm between canes. Most varieties will need to be staked.

Raspberries are very vigorous and can be a little invasive. They will sucker new canes some distance from the main plant. In the spring, mark out the boundary of the plant and push a spade straight down the boundary. This will sever the suckers. Then dig out the suckers that grow outside the boundary.

Pick the fruits when they have turned a deep red and drop off easily from the core when touched. This is when the fruits are most ripe and sweetest. Excess fruit can be made into raspberry jam or frozen.


Raspberries are relatively easy to propagate, as they are "weedy" and tend to take over gardens if not maintained. There are several methods.


New plants will often spring up next to parent plants (suckers). These seedlings can easily and reliably be excavated and replanted in early spring. Sever them from the parent plant's root system and keep the rootball as intact as possible.


Layering, specifically tip layering, is the most effective, and can be done during the growing season after fruiting is complete. The growing tip is placed into a hole and covered with soil. The tip will work its way back up to the surface and roots will form at the elbow.


Otherwise, cane cuttings can be taken in early fall and planted immediately. A cutting should have several buds

If it is the middle of winter, root cuttings can be taken, stored for the winter, and planted in early spring.


http://www.gardenguides.com/94645-propagate-wild-raspberry-plants.html http://www.agardenersforum.com/forum/ubbthreads.php/ubb/showflat/Number/302835 http://usagardener.com/how_to_grow_fruits/how_to_grow_raspberries.php

Pests and diseases


Recent breeding has resulted in varieties that are thornless and upright (do not require staking). Raspberries have also been crossed with other members of the Rubus genus, resulting in a number of hybrids, such as boysenberry and loganberry.

A gold raspberry, which is pale yellow, has been selected by horticulturists.

The black raspberry, also called a blackcap, is not the same plant, being a variety (usually) of Rubus occidentalis, a North American species. Other Rubus species also called raspberries include:

Not all of these are included in the same subgenus.


If you have a photo of this plant, please upload it! Plus, there may be other photos available for you to add.

Standard Cyclopedia of Horticulture

Standard Cyclopedia of Horticulture

Raspberry (from rasp, a tool resembling a file, and berry), a name applied to certain species of the genus Rubus, particularly to Rubus idaeus, R. strigosus, and R. occidentalis, from which have been derived common cultivated forms grown for their excellent edible fruits.

Raspberry plants have perennial roots and erect or nearly erect biennial canes bearing thimble-shaped red, yellow, black, or purple-colored fruit consisting of many cohering drupelets which separate from a partially dried receptacle. The raspberry is distinguished from the blackberries and dewberries, which belong to the same genus, in bearing fruit that separates from its receptacle, while that of the blackberries and dewberries does not separate from their juicy receptacles.

Origin of horticultural varieties.

The first raspberries introduced into cultivation in America were varieties of European origin belonging to the species Rubus idaeus. These varieties, adapted to a mild humid climate, did not prove sufficiently hardy to merit their continued cultivation after hardy native varieties of good quality began to be propagated. At present but two varieties, the Antwerp and Superlative, representing the European species, Rubus idaeus, are grown commercially. These two varieties are raised only in the Pacific Coast region and are there being gradually superseded by American varieties.

By far the greater part of the varieties under cultivation at present belong to the American species Rubus strigosus and R. occidentalis. The American red raspberry, R. strigosus, is very similar to the European species, R. idaeus. Both species have erect canes, but the American species has proved much hardier and adapted to a wider range of environmental conditions. Two of the first varieties of this species to come under cultivation were the Marlboro and Cuthbert, and these are still two of the most widely grown varieties. The black raspberry, R. occidentalis, has recurved canes which are longer than those of either of the red-fruited species, and bears black fruit. The acreage of this class is, at present, much less than that of the red raspberry. The Gregg, one of the first varieties of this species introduced into cultivation, is also one of the leading varieties grown at present.

Yellow-fruited varieties have come from both the American species, the erect-growing sorts from R. strigosus, and those with recurved canes rooting at the tips from R. occidentalis. Purple-caned varieties, of which the Columbian is the most widely grown, are hybrids between R. strigosus and R. occidentalis.

Up to the present time, the greater part of the varieties under cultivation have appeared as chance seedlings. Recently, however, many promising new varieties have been originated as a result of systematic effort to produce better sorts. Thus, as the result of definite breeding work, the New York State Experiment Station has originated the June red raspberry, and the South Dakota Experiment Station the Ohta and Sunbeam red raspberries. These, as well as other experiment stations, have many promising varieties under test. L. E. Wardell, a practical grower of Marlboro, New York, has originated the Empire red raspberry, another promising variety Many others are also trying to originate better varieties, some of whom are using in their work foreign species recently introduced into this country.

Geographical distribution. The limit of the successful culture of this fruit corresponds closely with the distribution of its wild forms. The southern limit is south-ern Virginia, along the mountains to northern Georgia, southern Tennessee, westward through the Ozark Mountains and southern Oklahoma. It is chiefly grown in northern regions. The great commercial centers of the industry are, at present, in New York State and Michigan. Smaller centers of its culture, aside from the proximity of the large cities, are found near Hagerstown in western Maryland; in central New Jersey; near Kansas City, Kansas; about Loveland, Colorado, and in the Puy- allup Valley of Washington. The culture of the raspberry, however, is not confined to these centers, but is widely distributed throughout the northern districts.


The red varieties are propagated by the use of suckers which spring from the underground parts. Nur-serymen secure their stock by digging in the spring suckers sent up during the previous summer. Some growers who wish to increase their own plantation wait until young suckers begin to come up in the spring and transplant these. The black raspberries, as well as the purple varieties now raised, are propagated by encouraging the tips of the young canes to root. As the young canes bend over and the tips approach the ground, soil is thrown over the tips. Plants suitable for setting the following spring will be formed during the remainder of the growing period by these rooted tips. By pinching back the tips in early summer when the canes are about 2 feet high, they will branch and several plants may be secured from each cane.

Culture. The raspberry thrives best in a deep fertile loam containing plenty of humus. Most varieties grow better on the heavier than on the lighter types of soil, though this is not universally true. The soil must be well drained and a location with good air-drainage should be preferred to lowlands, as certain varieties are peculiarly susceptible to poor air-drainage. Fertilizers are not generally used on raspberry fields, and among growers using them their composition varies widely. The use of fertilizers should depend on the needs of the particular soil, and such needs can be determined only by actual tests of the soil with varying amounts and kinds of plant-foods.

Two methods of culture are commonly used, the hill system and the solid- row system. Under the first system the plants are usually set 5 feet apart each way, while under the second system they are set 3 or 4 feet apart in the row, the rows being from 6 to 8 feet apart. Under the hill system less hand- labor is required for the returns in fruit than under the solid-row system. The plants should be set as early in the spring as possible, as the moisture conditions are usually better in early spring. In setting the plants, the principal requirement is that the soil shall be thoroughly firmed about the roots. Vegetable intercrops may be grown between the rows during the season and should help pay the cost of cultivation for the first year. Cabbage, cauliflower, beans, peas, and lettuce are often used for this purpose. Cultivation should be thorough and frequent, not only the first year, but after the plantation comes into bearing. Especially when the berries are growing and ripening do the plants need the large supply of moisture that frequent cultivation conserves.

Training and pruning.

In training the red raspberries when the plants are set by the hill system, a stake is usually placed by each plant before the second year's growth begins and the year-old canes tied to it (Fig. 3347). This allows the new canes to grow up outside the old ones and makes picking easier. When the solid-row system is used, several methods of training are practised. (1) When the plants are vigorous but do not grow very tall, the suckers are allowed to grow up between the plants in the row, while those between the rows are destroyed by frequent cultivation (Fig. 3348). No pruning is required. (2) When the canes grow very long, they are not pruned until spring and then are sometimes cut back to a height of about 3 feet in order that the cane may support, its crop of fruit. Weaker canes are removed at this time. (3) Instead of cutting the canes back as described above, they are often trained to trellises in the following ways: (a) A trellis is made by stretching a wire on posts set about 30 feet apart in the row. The old canes are tied to this wire to keep them upright when ripening their fruit (Fig. 3349). Two wires, one above the other, are sometimes used in making this kind of trellis and the canes either tied in an erect position to both wires (Fig. 3350), or they are arched over the upper wire and tied to the lower (Fig. 3351). When tied in an erect position, those portions of the canes projecting more than 6 inches above the wire are pruned off. (b) The trellis is often made by stretching two wires along the line of posts from the ends of crosspieces about 15 inches in length (Fig. 3352). The old and new canes are kept between the wires and out of the way when the cultivating is done. Sometimes the old canes are tied to the wires, half of them being tied to the wire on one side and half to the wire on the other side (Fig. 3353). The young canes then come up between the old canes and will be out of the way of pickers and cultivators. Many variations of the above systems are in use.

The above systems are applicable to the red raspberries. The black and purple varieties do not sucker and areusually trained as follows: The tips of the young canes are pinched back when they are about 2 1/2 feet from the ground. This causes them to branch and form bushes better able to support a heavy crop of fruit. If the side branches grow very long, they are pruned back in the spring to a length of 6 to 18 inches. Sometimes a trellis is made and they are trained on the system

described above under (a).

The old fruiting canes of all types of raspberries should be cut out and taken from the field immediately after the crop is picked. Some fruit is usually secured the second year after planting, often enough to pay the entire cost of cultivation for that year. The duration of the plantation depends on the varieties, the care, the locality, and the practice of the grower.

Some growers of the black raspberries harvest one crop and then plow the plantation up; most persons keep the fields for two or three crops, and still others gather six to eight crops before destroying the plantation. The red raspberry fields are usually fruited longer than are those of the black raspberry. Growers generally plan to secure eight to ten crops from a field. Yields from fields receiving good treatment will vary from 50 to 150 bushels to the acre, depending upon the locality, the soil, and the variety grown.

In many northern and western sections, varieties are grown that require winter protection. This is best secured by drawing the soil from one side of the row of plants, using either hoes or a plow, inclining the canes to that side, and covering them entirely with earth about 2 inches deep. The canes are left as late as possible in the spring before uncovering. When the buds begin to start, the canes are forced into an erect position.

Picking and handling.

Raspberries should be harvested as carefully as possible in order to avoid injuring them. The subsequent behavior of the berries on the market depends in a large measure on the care used in picking and handling. Berries injured or bruised in handling, or soft from being over-ripe, or from rainy weather, are quickly attacked by certain mold fungi which cause their decay. To avoid as much injury as possible, three fingers should always be used in picking; very few berries should be held in the hand at one time, to avoid mashing them; the berries should always be placed, not dropped, into the basket or cup; all decaying, over-ripe, and injured berries should be discarded and no later handling of the berries in the baskets allowed. The crates should be hauled on spring wagons to avoid jolting and neither the berries nor the crates containing them should be exposed to the sun. Pint baskets should be used in harvesting red varieties and either pint or quart baskets for the black and purple varieties. (Fig. 3354.) In Pacific Coast regions a basket, or "cup" as it is called there, holding a pound of berries, is commonly employed.


The principal red varieties grown at present .are Cuthbert (Fig. 3355). Herbert, King, Marlboro, Ranere (St. Regis), and Perfection (Fig. 3356). Promising new varieties are June, Empire, Sunbeam, and Ohta. Much interest has recently been shown in the fall-bearing type represented by the Ranere. Among the black raspberries, the Cumberland, Farmer, Gregg, and Kansas are the leading varieties. The Golden Queen is the principal yellow sort grown. The Columbian is the principal purple-caned variety at present, although the Shaffer (Fig. 3357) and Cardinal are also grown. The Royal is a very promising new purple- caned sort.


Among the more serious diseases of the raspberry are crown- gall, anthracnose. cane - blight, and orange-rust. When plants free from these diseases are set, very little trouble is likely to be experienced later from them. The means of control commonly employed when these diseases are found are eradication and destruction of plants affected by crown-gall and orange-rust, and the cutting out and removing from the field of all canes affected by anthracnose and cane-blight. Cane- borers are considered the most serious insect enemy of the raspberry. The adults lay their eggs in the tips of the canes. When these tips are seen to be withering and drooping, they should be cut off and burned. If the cut is made well below the point of injury, these tips will contain the eggs or young larvae of the borer.

The above text is from the Standard Cyclopedia of Horticulture. It may be out of date, but still contains valuable and interesting information which can be incorporated into the remainder of the article. Click on "Collapse" in the header to hide this text.

Standard Cyclopedia of Horticulture

Rubus idaeus, Linn. European Raspberry. An erect, mostly stiff grower, prop. by suckers, the canes light-colored and bearing nearly straight slender prickles: lfts. ovate, white beneath, irregularly toothed and notched, usually somewhat plicate or wrinkled: fl.-clusters mostly long and interrupted, most of the peduncles dividing into 2 or 3 pedicels, the pedicels, as also the flowering shoots, petioles, and midribs, finely pubes cent, but not glandular, and sparsely furnished with firm recurved prickles: fls. small, white; calyx pubescent: fr. oblong or conical, dark red, yellow or whitish, produced more or less continuously throughout the season. Eu. and Asia.—Named for Mt. Ida, in Greece. Early intro. into this country, but now nearly driven from cult. by the hardier native species. The Antwerps, Fontenay, and Fastolf belong here. Rubus idaeus is not known to be native to N. Amer., but it is said to be sparingly escaped from cult.

The above text is from the Standard Cyclopedia of Horticulture. It may be out of date, but still contains valuable and interesting information which can be incorporated into the remainder of the article. Click on "Collapse" in the header to hide this text.


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