Like it or not, and autumn is on the verge, a month or two will pass and it will be possible to slip on the first frozen puddle. So why not start cooking our favorite plants, which presented us with a harvest in the summer, for a real winter? Today, in this material, we will try to tell you as much as possible about the preparation for raspberry winter.Care for raspberries in the fall.
Two autumn raspberry care periods
In general, the autumn period, in any case, with respect to raspberries, can be strictly divided into two periods - early and late. The first period, that is, the early one, is the very end of August, when it is still quite warm. It begins immediately after the harvest and the cessation of raspberry growth, although the wood may still show some growth activity, but it is already striving with all its might to ripen in order to survive the cold winter.
The second period, which begins when the first leaf falls and lasts until the real frost, when you can’t go outside without a warm jacket and hat. During this period, either actively sculpts the snowball, or the soil freezes to the greatest depth, if this snowball is not there yet. What do raspberry bushes do during this period? They try to complete all the active processes taking place in them as quickly as possible.Autumn pruning raspberries.
What do raspberries need in the fall?
I would start with autumn dressing: the bushes are exhausted, they gave us a rich harvest, why not thank them in return ?! The second action is, of course, cutting off the offspring shoots and thinning out the young shoots after harvesting the entire crop. The third is mandatory preventive treatment against various pests and diseases.
Fourth - watering, but competent watering, watering - as needed, and not every year it is necessary. The fifth is shelter, it all depends on the zone, in the center of Russia raspberries grow even without shelter. But I’ll still explain how to do it right, at least in a nutshell.
Five points, this is raspberry! And they say - planted and forgot. But still, these five points should not be afraid at all. Raspberry is a strong and resistant culture to many vagaries of the weather, and it happens that even without the help of a person it comes out of difficult situations.
Early Autumn Raspberry Care
Autumn top dressing raspberries
Depends on a lot of things, for example, on the soil. If your soil is poor, then it is quite possible to add potassium sulfate, a lot is not needed - just a teaspoon per square meter of raspberry soil. It seems a trifle, but if this same potassium sulfate is dissolved in water, then on soils that do not differ in richness, it may well accelerate the maturation of wood before severe frosts.
About fertilizers for raspberries: if, when planting plants, you thoroughly fertilized the soil with, say, humus or humus, then maybe autumn feeding is not necessary? Limit ourselves to potassium, and that's enough? Raspberry is a strong, hardy plant, it, of course, prefers tasty and nutritious soil instead of poor soil, but without excess nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium, too, I tell you, it grows and bears fruit well.
And if you have a plot with black soil, loose, fertile, air- and moisture-permeable, then why spend all your energy and money on additional fertilizers. With an overabundance of fertilizers, there may be a banal oppression of raspberry plants and not strengthening their immunity, but, on the contrary, its decline, and hence various diseases. So, let's get along with potassium, we have already said about the doses.
We go further - trace elements, this is a completely different hypostasis. The introduction of trace elements in the winter and raspberry immunity will strengthen, and winter hardiness will increase. I would safely advise taking three grams of zinc sulfate and five grams of manganese sulfate (naturally, all this in terms of a square meter of soil), there will definitely not be an overdose.
Some are afraid of this terrible word - "pruning." And what's so bad about him? Well, he frustrated the raspberry shoot, did his job, and cut it to the soil level, why take care of it? In addition, all green shoots can be removed, because they will not have time to ripen, all will freeze. Extra growth can also be cut out.
Those involved in raspberries have one golden rule: they, in addition to leaving the most powerful and strongest growths, shortening them by about a quarter (everything is clear - so that the raspberries shrink), they also leave the same number of shoots as they cut offenders, plus 20% (insurance fund). Here's a trick. What do we achieve with this technique? We get the supply necessary for further growth of the raspberry bush, to increase productivity, and if there is severe frost and little snow, there will be a small reserve that can always be removed in the spring.
Important! The raspberry shoots that have been thawed need to be cut to the very root, sometimes you can even dig it out a little and remove it, and sprinkle the place with fresh soil.
Autumn watering raspberries
In early autumn, the amount of raspberry watering should be minimized until they are completely stopped. This is necessary so that the shoots are lignified and do not freeze, otherwise on nutritious soil and with plenty of moisture they will continue to grow until the New Year. At the same time, it is important to stop raspberry watering only if it begins to rain or the soil freezes, if it is dry and not frosty, then it is quite possible to pour out a bucket of water every other day every square meter.
In general, it all depends on the season, it's about watering: if, for example, August and September were dry and mean for rains, then twice a month it is worth pouring a bucket for each square meter, it is impossible to allow the earthen coma to completely dry out under raspberries.
When light frosts begin, we advise to treat raspberries with 2% Bordeaux liquid and toss a snowball at the bushes if it has time to fall (just in case).
Raspberry bushes in the fall.
Read our detailed material: Bordeaux gardening fluid.
Late Autumn Raspberry Care
Now the temperature does not rise above zero, the sun goes farther, frosts at night are not uncommon, and all the leaves or opal are dead or very dry - this means it's time to conduct winter operations on raspberries. It is not worth rushing with them, winter does not come all at once abruptly and forever, everything happens in stages. Say, we covered wood on raspberries in cooler areas: it seems it’s getting colder, but take the sun and look out and start to burn so much that the covered wood in these two or three days can ripen.
What is in the second stage: prevention - we drive out parasites and diseases lurking for the winter.
Raspberry processing against pests and diseases
For this, it’s all that’s needed: to remove all the rubbish from under the raspberry bushes, burn all the broken branches, rotten berries, put the leaves together in a heap and also burn them, and the dust and ashes can be used as fertilizer, at least 5% potassium, but still there. If you are 100% sure of your plants and their health, then raspberry leaves can not be burned, but sent to compost: they will rot, good and, most importantly, natural fertilizer will work.
In the same period, raspberry bushes can be re-treated with Bordeaux liquid, only you can safely use not two or three percent, but take 5% Bordeaux liquid and thoroughly process everything from top to bottom so that no infection remains (for example, the same aphid or arachnoid tick).
The main thing is to treat raspberry plants with Bordeaux liquid for clear effect in clear weather and without rain, and it is desirable that the shoots are dry and there is no rain at least one day after treatment. Of course, if the means allow and if the inner voice does not oppose, then the plants can be treated with permitted insecticides, for example, from a series of multifunctional ones, such as Allegro or Aktara, which I know, then it seems to me that the effect will be even better.
Remove unripe raspberry shoots
Well this time, everything is simple and fast: we take a sharp secateurs and a rag soaked in alcohol, and remove all green unripe raspberry shoots that definitely will not survive the winter, and moving from the bush to the bush, wipe the secateurs blade with alcohol so as not to transfer the infection.
If they are not removed, they will freeze in the winter, begin to rot in the spring, become moldy and the plant’s immunity itself will be reduced.
The last watering of raspberries
Yes, you can say so - the farewell watering of raspberries in the season has not yet frozen the soil. It is necessary to catch a warm day and according to the forecast to see that there are no frosts for a couple of days and literally spoil the soil, pouring two or three buckets per square meter of raspberry. What for? Such irrigation will help to survive severe frosts, because, as you know, in such moisture-loving crops as raspberries, excess moisture in the soil increases, although not very significantly, winter hardiness. But sometimes a couple of degrees can be enough to keep the plants safe and sound.
If for a long period, say, a week, there was no rain at all, then under each bush you can safely pour a couple of buckets of water at room temperature, and fine - if it rains.
Raspberry Shelter for the Winter
It's time to think about the winter shelter of raspberries, this is more relevant for those regions that are located north of the central strip of Russia. Here, of course, everything depends on the variety - it’s not difficult to read because it is winter hardy or not very much both from the winters in your region and the amount of snow. After all, better than snow, probably, nothing else will hide.
For example, the area where you live is characterized by very snowy winters and moderate temperatures. Then in general, do raspberries need to be covered? We think there is no such need. If possible, and the lashes are gently bent, then they can be bent closer to the ground so that the snow covers them accurately, and tied to any vertical peg to fix, and in the middle of winter they suddenly did not straighten.
In what cases does raspberry need to be covered?
First - you managed to buy a variety of very large-fruited, very productive, it tastes just divine. Then he is clearly thermophilic.
Second, your winters are very cold.
Third, winters do not differ in critical temperatures, but there is practically no snow, and if it falls, it will either melt or sweep it somewhere under the fence or sweep it from the yard (a kind of American winter).
Fourth - you managed to buy a variety without spikes - that's great, but rodents will also be delighted with it.
So, if the bush needs to be covered, then it is advisable to bend it, so that then also cover it from above. In frost, bushes are not a reason to shelter, they can burst like matches. On top of everything, you won't bend a raspberry bush to the ground, but, as it seems to me, an angle of 45 degrees is the ideal maximum option that you can do.
Before bending raspberry bushes, I advise you to drive the most elementary wooden hooks into the ground, then more simply than simple, wrap the bush with twine and tie it to the hooks, slowly tilting and pulling the twine. Give a day to rest, "get used to" - this is really so, and after a day or two try to pull up the twine, if it goes and guess a couple of centimeters, then fine. If not, it means that you will first have to cover the raspberries with a non-woven covering material, and from above securely wrap them with a net from rodents or at least sprinkle fir spruce branches, but fresher and more often, otherwise the needles will quickly fly around it and there will be little sense. Residents of the northern regions who want to grow raspberries have no choice but to simply fill it with earth, having built a kind of mound. Perhaps, under the ground and with snow, raspberry bushes will survive your extreme winter.
If snow falls, but it is not enough, we build something like a sandbox around a bent raspberry bush so that the snow fills all empty spaces, cakes and does not escape. As protective shields, you can use old plywood, cellular polycarbonate, or anything at hand.
At the risk of invasion of mice, it remains to stock up on poisoned baits and spruce branches.
All that we listed at the end is, of course, for a very harsh winter. I repeat: in the center of Russia, a raspberry is standing intact and winters well, and it gives good harvests, and it requires minimal care, but it still needs it.