This was the last raspberry harvest of 2020. We kept some in the fridge and had a batch frozen in the freezer so that we could enjoy them in the coming months with breakfast, in cakes and with drinks.
It was a great season for all types of soft fruit. After the last harvest of raspberries, I leave the plants for another week and then prune them down to the ground.
There are 2 types of raspberries; summer and autumn fruiting raspberries and there are different rules about how to care for them.
Growing autumn raspberries as opposed to summer ones brings me so many benefits:
1) They are easier to care for.
You rarely face problems with raspberry maggots with autumn plants unlike summer plants.
They are also easier to prune – Summer raspberries sprout fruit on two year old twigs or ‘Floricane’ which means that you need to prune carefully to make sure you are not pruning the wrong twigs. Autumn raspberries, however, bear fruit on new one year-old twigs or ‘primocanes’, so there is no wrong way to prune these, just cut straight back to the ground every November.
2) Better yeild of fruits
From my experience, autumn raspberry fruits grow larger and taste better.
They mature in late summer and continue to fruit until the first frost which gives you at least 8 weeks of fresh fruit. Summer raspberries, however, produce a crop of small fruits at about the same time in July at the same time as the strawberries and blackcurrants – which means there is too much fresh fruit to eat and harvest at a busy time in the garden.
Obviously if you’re a huge fan of raspberries like myself, you can grow both types.