How to Winterize Raspberry Plants

Raspberry shrubs are among the hardiest, low-maintenance berries you may grow. Not only are they a source of fresh fruit, but they can also add vibrant colour to your own backyard. While raspberry plants are hardy, generally growing in U.S. Department of Agriculture plant hardiness zones 4 to 9, they do require special care to protect them through winter.

Continue watering the raspberries long after the crops have stopped producing fruit, and also don’t hold off on watering until the first frost. This extended watering prevents over-drying during the winter and helps harden the plants and also prepare them for your cold.

Eliminate any of the brown canes which produced fruit through the summer but abandon the green canes alone. When pruning the canes, cut them down to the ground level.

Bury the rest of the raspberry canes if these are plants which haven’t experienced winter nevertheless, since these plants are extra-sensitive to winter’s chills. Push the elastic canes down to the floor and bury them beneath a few shovelfuls of dirt.

Erect a simple fence barrier around the raspberry bush, as raspberries attract rabbits and other insects during the winter who prefer to feed the plant’s stems. Use traditional 1/4-inch mesh cable, which you may purchase at garden shops and nurseries. The fence should move 3 inches into the ground, to prevent rabbits from digging beneath it, and stand 20 inches over the dirt to keep rabbits from jumping over it.

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