Friday, September 26, 2008
Organic Red Raspberries
Its hard to pick a favorite backyard produce, but the red raspberries are near the top of the list - mainly because they are perenniel and relatively maintenance free - except for the constant picking! I've never bought raspberries at the grocery store always balking at the price for the tiniest container, but there's nothing quite like a fresh raspberry (or any berry for that matter). My 50 foot row is extremely productive with the right temps and rainfall. This season started slightly dry, but with two good rains just as the berries were starting to ripen, they took off and I've been picking since, and will continue to pick until the first frost in a week or two (maybe?). Raspberries are perenniel plants requiring only a haircut after they die off for the year. I cut the canes back to about 6 inches above the ground each winter and move the wondering off-shoots back in the row. There are numerous varieties of raspberry plants which you can read about here. Growing them is easy. If you get a low-growing variety, there's no need to trellis. I also have a golden raspberry that really doesn't produce much, but when it does, the flavor is to die for. The golden raspberries never make it out of the garden -- I eat them while picking. I thought about getting more goldens because the seeds aren't as pronounced as other varieties. Prolific is an understatement, and I couldn't be happier. Even frozen, these little beauties brighten my yogurt, smoothies, oatmeal crisp, granola, and raw milk. My husband hates them! He claims the seeds annoy him and he won't eat them -- so they are all mine for the winter. I froze a ton of them, so I'll likely turn into a red raspberry about January.