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flower and fruit gardening guides home > pruning black raspberries

Pruning black raspberries

Black raspberries are large, incredibly sweet and tasty fruits.

Although black raspberries and blackberries are two entirely different fruits, they do share a few common characteristics and raspberry care needs. Pruning black raspberries is almost the same as pruning blackberries; when done properly, your raspberry stand will remain productive for years.

When either blackberry or black raspberry growing, the first thing you need to do after the harvest is to remove the floricanes. They are easily identified because they are the canes that have born the fruit. Black raspberry floricanes should be removed at ground level. Prune them as low as possible without disturbing new growth, which you will see developing at the base of the old cane. This is the first step in pruning black raspberries and is also a good time to check your raspberry bush for symptoms of disease. Remove and destroy any additional canes or new growth that appears weak or otherwise shows symptoms of disease. Other than this inspection, new growth doesn?t need attention when you are pruning.

The second step to pruning black raspberries is to pinch off the lateral branches of the remaining primocanes (canes that have grown foliage but not fruited) to about 12 inches. This tipping will encourage the primocanes to develop foliage and blossoms in their second year.

When pruning black raspberries and blackberries, new growth canes can be left lying on the ground over winter. Next growing season, when these new primocanes reach about 18 inches tall, pinch them back three to four inches (tipping). This will encourage them to branch out laterally, grow foliage in their first year (the present season) and produce a good harvest in their second year.

After pruning, your black raspberry stand, although grown in separate canes, it should look shrub like and globular like a raspberry bush and flowers and fruit will develop around its circumference.

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