Raspberries, plucked soft and sweet, are the most delicate of fruits. This makes them perfect for home gardens.
In a national survey consumers picked raspberries as their #2 fruit, just behind strawberries. Why?
It’s the uniquely wonderful raspberry flavor: sweet, tart, and delicious. The explosion of flavor throughout your tongue makes these berries almost inconceivable to resist.
Growing raspberries is relatively easy, and very rewarding for they produce the most fruit for the amount of work involved.
Raspberries come in red, black, purple, and golden. Golden raspberries are sweeter than the other varieties.
In the United States, about 90% of all raspberries sold come from Washington, California and Oregon. In Canada, the province of British Colombia produces about 80% of all raspberries sold in Canada.
There are over 200 species of raspberries. They also may produce in spring, fall, or be ‘everbearing’. The plants are very hardy, and there are really just a few tips to growing raspberries successfully. And,The health benefits of raspberries include:
*1. They do not have any fat, saturated fat, sodium or cholesterol.
*2. They are high in fiber, vitamin C, potassium and folate. Raspberries contain about 50% of the recommended daily allowance of vitamin C. Some of the fiber in raspberries is soluble fiber in the form of pectin, which lowers cholesterol.
*3. Raspberries are antioxidant powerhouses. Antioxidants are protectors of the body, a shield to fend off free radicals that cause damage to our cells.
*4. They are low in calories.
*5. They can help lower high blood pressure.
*6. Raspberries are also a good source of iron and folate (which is used especially in treatment of low red blood cells or anemia).
*7. The berries contain a natural substance called ellagic acid, which is an anti-carcinogenic (cancer-preventing) compound.
*8. They have an anti-inflammatory property that may help to reduce inflammation of the joints.
*9. Raspberries are also thought to contain compounds which are important towards having a healthy vision. The substance that appears to be responsible for this is called lutein.
The berries may be small in size but they are massively healthy. Studies show that the berries could be some of the healthiest foods on the planet.
Raspberries need deep very well-drained soil. They prefer sunlight but will tolerate partial shade. I have seen a healthy crop of raspberries produced year after year from a few plants tucked behind a garden shed!
Grow raspberries in the same soil as last year’s veggies BUT don’t put them in the same place as previously grown potatoes, tomatoes or peppers.
Avoid cold or windy spots.The most common error is planting raspberry plants too deep. Plants need loose soil. So, do not plant deeper than 2-3 inches in loose dry soil.
Remember to offer your plant loads of room to grow. The roots of every raspberry plant needs to be given a hole one foot deep by one foot large to offer the plant room to take root with out other plants honing in on its space.
Mulch is a useful tool for growing raspberries(no more than 3 inches deep). It helps to keep the weeds down. Do not apply it too thickly, as new shoots need to be able to get through a layer of mulch.
Raspberries will forgive you if the soil gets a little dry from time to time. But, dry soil during the fruiting period will result in smaller berries.
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