The raspberries did not last very long this year with the hot temperatures. The spent canes need to be removed from the bushes so the new growth enough room to remain vigorous.
The canes that remain are trellised back up so they can continue to grow. Many of the canes that are left are showing signs of that there will be fall berries, so removing the old canes had to be done carefully so it didn’t disturb the newly developing fruit.
The old canes are not discarded. They are cut into sections and will be used on the hill when we are replanting the logged sections.
Frick the cat is not always hanging around, but when he is home he is very, very clingy and wants attention all the time.
As I was trying to pick enough raspberries for breakfast with enough left over to freeze a cookie sheet full of the fruit, Frick kept getting in the way.
I would stop picking, pull him out of the bushes and set him down. Then I started setting him farther and farther from the bushes.
Before long, I was carrying the black cat out of the garden, across the driveway and to the other side of the woodshed. All the while he would snuggle in my arms, purring away and rubbing his chin on me. He would stay a little while, then come right back to once again climb into the bushes to appear where I was trying to harvest.
I finally had to give up picking and go into the house in order for the cat to finally leave me and my raspberry bushes alone..
Just as the strawberries are are at an end, the raspberries are starting to pink up.
The strawberries were not a very abundant crop this year. Usually I am sending out containers full for visitors to the farm, family and friends. This year, with the buttercups taking over the garden strawberry bed, the harvest was quite a bit smaller but still enough to share a little and freeze enough for wintertime.
It looks like the raspberries will have a better crop than the strawberries, but it will depend on weather and the birds who are staking out their perches in anticipation of ripe berries for their own meals.
It turned off sunny for a half day and I was able to get all the old canes off the raspberries and the spent vines off the Logan berries.
Once the old vines were removed from the tangle, the vines that were left will be next years fruit. The cleaned up vines were strung along the wood and wire trellis.
The raspberries are the lighter green foliage at the far end of the structure and the Logan berries are the ones that are closer.
The canes of the new raspberries are already taller than my head and were fragile as I tried to corral them into their growing space. I did break a few of them while getting them situated but hopefully there are still enough to produce a good crop to ripen just after strawberry season 2018.
To keep the weeds down a good hoeing will be done around the base of each plant and a new coating of wood chips laid down. As the chips decompose they will provide nutrients to the plants while suffocating the weed seeds as they germinate and try to emerge in the spring.
The nice weather did not last long and by afternoon the clouds had once again moved in and threatened rain.
The raspberries came to an abrupt end when we had several days of 100 degree weather in early June. The plants could just not keep the berries from shriveling up even before they started to turn red.
Now after the dog days of summer have turned to a more temperate nature (I hope that those 100 degree days are behind us at this point) the raspberries are sending out a last hurrah before the cold weather sets in.
About 20 stems have become loaded with sweet, ripe raspberries.
There are not enough berries to do anything grand, but it is sure nice to have a few with pancakes in the morning. I know it will not last maybe only a week or two.
The canes that produced earlier in the year and these that are producing now will be cut off at ground level after these are taste treats are gone. Any canes that did not produce this year will be the ones that will produce next year.
Another fall task completed in the garden.
After the trellis failure and the caneberries flattened to the ground, repairs have the trellis back up and functioning.
All the old canes from from raspberries and marionberries have been cut out (not without significant thorns puncturing my hands) and next years canes woven into the trellis.
This is how the patch will sit, dormant through the winter weather, before it will spring to life again when the weather warms back up. I will be content with the packages of frozen berries that were harvested and stored until the new berries come on right after strawberry season.
With the end of the strawberry crop, the focus is now on the raspberries. At first it was just one or two getting ripe at a time. Now, every 3 days we are able to pick a quart or two at a time.
Aside from eating them fresh by the handfuls, we are enjoying them in the evening over ice cream and have been freezing a few for winter. If I get a cooler day this coming week and when not busy in the hay field, a raspberry cobbler will be bubbling away in the oven (I am hoping this will entice a hay-bucker or two to not only stop for a visit, but to hang for a bit and throw a few bales around for a fruity desert reward).
PS This is just a side note, but as I look out my dining room window this morning, I see a suspicious looking spot in the lawn. A new mole is beginning to work in the grass. This slow-motion invasion must be the off-spring of the monster mole that was caught during the winter.
Current score, moles 4- Mike 3. Stay tuned for further mole adventures.