I planted a raspberry cane this spring, and it appears to be doing well, having put out a new cane that is now 5 ft tall (and curving under its own weight.) There is also old growth at the bottom that bore fruit this year. What do I do to this plant to promote new canes and to maximize fruit production. I would also like to keep it somewhat under control, as I have seen raspberries take over a garden.

  1. Should I stake it or trellis it?
  2. How should I prune it?
  3. How should it be fertilized?

2 Answers 2


This is the advice given by the Royal Horticultural Society:


Single fence

This system is ideal for summer-fruiting raspberries in a small garden.

Drive 2.5m (8ft) long and 75mm (3in) diameter posts into the ground to a depth of 75cm (30in) at 5m (15ft) intervals. Stretch 12 gauge (3.5mm) galvanized wire between the posts at 60cm (2ft) vertical intervals. Plant the summer-fruiting raspberries and tie in the canes along one side of the wires. Keep fruiting canes on one side and young new canes to the other side of the wires as the season progresses. In autumn, the fruited canes can easily be pruned out and the young canes will be separate along the other side of the wire.


Regular annual pruning will result in healthier plants, and better quality crops. Summer-fruiting raspberries:

Cut back fruited canes to ground level after harvesting; do not leave old stubs. Select the strongest young canes, around six to eight per plant, and tie them in 8 –10cm (3–4in) apart along the wire supports. Remove the remaining young stems to ground level.

I fertilize mine with poultry manure pellets in early spring (about 3ox per sq yard - you could use a general fertilizer such as Grow More, instead), and then mulch them and, with regular watering during long dry spells, I find that this keeps them healthy and helps them to crop well.


Q. Should I stake it or trellis it?

Personally, we (in my childhood family garden) never did and I've never seen or heard of people doing so. That's not to say that some people don't stake or trellis them (maybe in an attempt to try and control their rambling nature). Raspberries definitely do not need to be staked or trellised, just think how they grow naturally in the wild...

Q. How should I prune it?

Depends on the type you have, there are 2 basic types:

  • "Summer bearers", these produce one crop a season, on the previous year's canes. New canes appear in the Spring, grow thought the Summer, do nothing during the Winter, then produce their crop the following Summer. Once those canes have produced they can be removed ie Cut down to the ground.

The following year's crop will come from the new canes formed during the previous year.

  • "Autumn (Fall) bearers", these produce two crops a year. Green shoots appear throughout the patch in Spring, these grow into long canes, which then bear berries at the tips of those canes during the end of that first season (generally in early Autumn "Fall").

Over the Winter, those canes will turn brown and look dead, but the following Spring, green shoots will appear and produce berries early in the Summer. When that crop run is over, the canes die for real and can be pruned out.

Q. How should it be fertilized?

Depending on how fertile your soil is, I would put down a 2 to 3inch (50 to 75mm) layer of compost, either once a year or twice:

  • Once a year, put the compost layer down in the Autumn (Fall).

  • Twice a year, put one compost layer down in the Spring, then the second layer in the Autumn (Fall).

Side note, it's important that raspberries have good drainage.

Additional information:

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.