Raspberry advice please

Having harvested the raspberries (all eight of them) I am wondering what to do next.  I am getting conflicting advice from t’internet.  Some places say prune the canes back after fruiting (I think that would be now, I don’t think I’m going to get any more), and others say prune the canes back after the second year.  They all seem to agree that giving the canes a good mulch of manure/compost in the spring is the way forward, so I’ll try to remember to do that.  All I’m wondering now is, do I prune now, or later, and how much by?  They’ve done so well it seems a shame to chop them all the way back to ground level.

Author: Rachel Wheeley

Comedian, podcaster, full time Mum, based in London, UK

11 thoughts on “Raspberry advice please”

  1. My book says cut the canes that have fruited down to ground after picking, except autumn varieties that can be cut in the spring as new growth appears. xx

  2. Eek! Ok, I’ll have a go. Does ground mean ground? The canes were a foot long when I got them, but perhaps they need cutting back even further than that! What butchery.

  3. I read the first few lines in Blotanical picts and thought “eat them!”. Only when I read the post did I realise you meant the canes not the raspberries! Sorry I can’t help with your query but good luck and I hope you get a better crop next year.

    Best wishes Sylvia (England)

  4. I think it depends on what type of raspberries you have and when they bear fruit. If you know the name of the canes you put in you could probably do a google search and find more specific instructions on how to prune your canes.

    I’ve also read that it’s best to take all the flowers off the new canes on new plants for the first year to let the plant put it’s energy into a stronger root system so you have better yields later on.

    We just put in raspberries this year, and I had no idea at first about all the pruning and maintenance. We put in ten plants in May and not one has shown any new growth yet – I’m getting nervous!

  5. I got mine last autumn, three each of three varieties, which have given me not many more than you had.
    Cut them back to the ground and you’ll get new canes growing, and lots more fruit, next year. I know how difficult it is to do! xx

  6. I too suffered from raspberry cutting back confusion (RCBC) and eventually settled the whole conundrum by simply cutting back all canes to one foot. I sometimes do it in the fall, sometimes in the spring (before any new growth appears). Doesn’t seem to matter either way. All the instructions about old growth and new growth and shoulds and should nots can, quite rapidly, overwhelm my poor little head, causing me to have to lie down and eat more raspberries, which is fine because, apparently, my canes like the way I manage them and fruit fully each summer despite my inability to understand simple gardening instructions. :-)

  7. Thanks everyone, the general consensus seems to be – chop ’em back! I’m going to do that, I’ll let you know how they do next year!

  8. Hi Rach, you’re right to cut them down to the ground when they’ve finished fruiting because they’re summer fruiting raspberries (you can tell that because they’re fruiting now) and the canes that will bear next year’s fruit will be starting to grow up soon and if you leave it too long it’s difficult to tell what is this year’s old wood and what is next year’s, and just to confuse you you’ll probably get a few raspberries on this year’s wood too. You cut the canes right down because they fruit best next year on the new canes that grow up from the roots in the autumn.

    Autumn fruiting raspberries are easier to manage because the canes grow up in the spring so all you need to do is cut everything down in the winter.


  9. I too have had no real success with raspberries regardless how I treat them. Maybe it’s time to dig them out and put in some new canes?

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