London (change)
7 messages
08/05/2013 at 15:50

We inherited raspberry canes in our overgrown garden. They are very tall and have gone bezerk. I plan to spray them, chop them down, and dig them out. We would like to keep some in this spot though. Would it be best to dig out some plants and keep them somewhere else while we clear the madness completely - or try to leave a reasonable proportion of them intact.

I don't know what variety they are but they fruit well (in the autumn) and taste very good.

08/05/2013 at 16:17

Yes, there is one thing very few if any fruit books tell you, and that is that raspberries can become a pest!!  Delicious though they are, they do need controlling don't they. I'd be inclined to keep the well fruiting ones in situ rather than damaging their rather shallow roots - and this is something you need to consider while removing the surplus.  It is easier to do this later in the season, but quite realise that now is when you need to reduce them.  It may be as well to cut them down to ground level now and remove the unwanted roots later when fruiting is over, but that will depend upon what you need to do.  

08/05/2013 at 16:27

From personal experience...

Raspberries are extremely invasive so be warned. They set deep tap roots for anchorage and shallow rooted runners that sprout new shouts all the way along.

It's nigh on impossible to contain Raspberries and they will come up anywhere and everywhere, growing twenty feet from the parent plant with no distinction between lawn, paving or the neighbour's lawn!

So, what to do about this?

Some gardeners mow the grass verges where Raspberries grow whilst others sink concrete slabs, neither of which deters the runners, only maintains an appearance.

I must say, this does annoy me about gardener's world, when they show and tell you what to do with raspberries but never breath a word about their vigour.

In the Elizabethan days, Raspberries were the woodland bramble and Blackberries were the fruit of cultivation. How things have changed but at least Blackberries can be contained since they root from their tips, not by stealth underground.

Personally, I dug all mine out after three years of ignorance that saw one single plant turn into a forest and I still have the odd rouge sprout that needs hacking back.

I would only grow Raspberries in pots if I chose to love these thugs again. Good Luck with yours. 

08/05/2013 at 17:43

If you have space and want to make/keep a raspberry bed it might be worth getting some of that barrier they use to contain bamboo - it does the same job for wandering raspberries.


08/05/2013 at 19:05

In years gone by, professional growers would spray between their raspberry rows with paraquat ( now banned ) as it was a contact weedkiller and would kill off the errant shoots without damaging the wanted canes. whether anything similar is still available I do not know.

Personally I find the shallow rooted new plants are quite easy to pull up as and when, and can then be shredded or replanted somewhere else.


09/05/2013 at 10:08

If they are autumn fruiting they should be chopped right back anyway. So first step i'd say would be to chop everthing down to the ground. Then after this year you can take stock after seeing what comes up, you might find that once you start with a proper fresh patch that they become more manageable. 

09/05/2013 at 14:42

Thanks everyone.  The whole of that end of the garden is a mess, so I'll cut them all back to the ground, pull out the ones round the edges that are overgrowing shrubs, and see what happens this year. I'll at least get fruit this year, and can decide whether to try to contain what's left as suggested above, or remove it all next year.

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