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Raspberries are plants that require good exposure to sun. However, my black-raspberry plant has been getting scorched of late. Typical signs of sun-scorching are when the older leaves start drying out (see photo), turning brown and papery (crumbles if you press). The new leaves are unaffected though.

I live in San Diego, and the weather here over the past two months has been between 65 and 75 F (and will remain the same until December). The plants get about 8-10 hours of sun everyday. In short, it's heaven for humans, but not for my raspberry plant.

Firstly, am I even right in diagnosing this as sun-scorching? If so, how can I prevent it? The obvious option would be to move it to a place with more shade. However, I'd rather wait till Jan-Feb when it'll be dormant, to move the plant. An alternate would be to cover it with a black netting that cuts the sunlight, yet allows it to breathe. However, I don't have much experience with these. What are my options given the constraints?

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up vote 5 down vote accepted

Q. Firstly, am I even right in diagnosing this as sun-scorching?

Browning of the leaves can be a reaction to too much sun. Raspberries don't mind some shade during the day.

Browning of the leaves can also be a sign of something more serious. If the browning is caused by something more serious than too much sun, the following resources can be used to help you identify:

Additionally:

  • Are the raspberries planted in soil that drains well?

  • Do they get enough water?

Q. If so, how can I prevent it?

  • Shade cloth (fabric) is without a doubt the best thing home gardeners can use in situations like yours (IMHO).

  • Shade cloth comes in variety of shade densities, something that offers 30 to 40% protection from the sun would probably be best in your particular situation.

  • Shade cloth, if looked after will last for years, therefore making it a worthwhile investment.

Creating a Unique Shade Garden, offers a nice approach that I think you could easily adapt to your needs.

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