The Q&A Archives: Rasberries

Question: Can I grow Rasberries in New Hampshire? Does Burpee sell the plants? How long before the plants bear fruit? Will they take the harsh winter? Do they need fertilizer or any special care?

Answer: There are two types of raspberries: summer-bearing and fall-bearing. Of the raspberry cultivars, the red raspberries are the most winter-hardy, followed by purple, and then black raspberries. The tops of the plants will die down at the end of the season and you can prune them back to soil level. The roots should survive your winter weather, especially when mulched to protect the ground from alternate freezing and thawing. If I were you, I'd choose 'Autumn Bliss', 'Heritage', 'Redwing', or 'Summit'. Since raspberries are perennials, you'll need to prepare the site well prior to planting. Find the sunniest site possible, one that's well-draining. Then amend the bed with plenty of organic matter . Plant the raspberry roots in the very early spring and mulch the bed well to help suppress weeds and to help keep the soil moisture even. New plants will often bear their second season, and go into full production by the time they're three years old. Your new raspberries shouldn't need to be fertilized the first year, but you can apply fertilizer the second spring, when new growth begins. Use 2 pounds of 5-10-10 per 100 feet of row. Burpee's does sell raspberry plants. You can order online at:, or phone (800) 888-1447 to place your order.

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