Newly Registered
Posts: 4
Joined: Wed Apr 11, 2018 1:47 pm
Location: Southern Germany

Mulching Raspberry Overkill?

I planted six raspberry canes last year and two didn't make it. The bed had a bad case of couch grass that didn't help.

The situation is this. First I put compost around each of them and bought shredded bark mulch to go on top.
The two bags full, didn't stop the grass, within a week it grew right through it.
Then I decided to tarp over it with a permeable black fleece, but had to cut a rectangle out to fit the rasperries through and leave space for them to send up new canes. The grass is now growing there too. So I put dryed grass clippings on it. Is this too much of a good thing? How do I water this? Should I reduce the grass layer?
mulched raspberries.jpg

User avatar
Posts: 28246
Joined: Thu May 01, 2008 7:21 pm
Location: Zone 6, NJ (3/M)4/E ~ 10/M

Re: Mulching Raspberry Overkill?

It’s best not to push mulch material up against plants you are growing. You need to leave about 2 inches bare. You can put gravel or other permeable material against woody plants but not for raspberries since later they will grow all around the base of the crowns.

For a while, it would be best to just be diligent and hand pull the grass that grows at the base of the raspberries — wear kitchen gloves to protect from thorns as well as to get a good grip on the grass.

Use something like a sharpened spoon to scrape/hoe the grass as they come up (or you can buy specialty tools — they all cost like $25-30). I use a looped flat metal band with a handle and teeth on one edge sold as XL dog and horse grooming tool for careful weeding/hoeing around plants.
Learning never ends because we can share what we've learned. And in sharing our collective experiences, we gain deeper understanding of what we learned.

Return to “FRUIT FORUM”