Raspberries For The Calumet Region, Strawberries Too!
Ready To Plant
No Space For Fruit Trees? Give The Berries A Try
N.W.Indiana and S.Chicagoland will both support the production of a good variety of berries in the garden (click for tips on growing berries) I am all for growing them at home with the price, at the grocery store, skyrocketing right out of sight. We need fresh fruit in our diets to keep us healthy(Longevity Smoothie hubpage by livelonger) not to mention that they taste scrumdelicious. Fresh picked berries are like the treat of Gods.The problem with trying to plant a good fruit crop is usually space or a lack of it.That is why I suggest giving the berry family a try.
You can plant Blackberries, Blueberries,( about Blueberries, hubpage by johnr54) Black Raspberries, Mulberries, Red Raspberries and Strawberries in this region with good success. I have chosen to plant Strawberries and Red Raspberries. My reasoning for these choices has to do with taste and availability. Strawberries are pretty easy to get going and do not require a lot of work, other than picking. That can be hard on your back when you have a big patch. I just love Red Raspberries so that is why I selected those for this years newest addition to my garden.
Mulberries and Blackberries grow wild around this part of the country so it may be that you can find a place to pick those for free. I have some friends with acreage and am able to get what I need when they are in season. These two are not my favorite but I do love a good Blackberry pie. You will have to fight off the birds because berries do attract the wildlife.
Control The Watering
Raspberries Prefer Good Drainage
Utilizing Plants For Fullest Potential
The corner of our property where the garden ends was very low when we moved here. I built the ground up with compost over the past few years and it is now ready to plant. Raspberries like soil that is well drained and also a higher content of compost with a higher acid rate. This should make my corner the best place to put the Raspberry bushes. I am also using the plants as a sort of privacy screen and therefor optimizing the potential of the plant itself.
The back of our yard is home to a small swimming pool. When the weather is hot and we do not have time to go to the lake, the pool is our cool refuge. The problem is we have no privacy in this area. It is the 4 corners for our neighbors. Planting the bushes will give us a much needed screen that will be at peak growth during the hot weather. That means the Raspberry canes will be at their tallest and provide the most privacy. This utilizes the plant material to its fullest potential. The canes will have to be pruned back in the fall but it will not matter because the pool will not be used in cold weather. It is a winning combination for our needs.
Strawberries Take Two Years To Start
The first year you put the plants in, it is recommended to let the plants develop. Do not pick berries for eating. Yes it is very tempting but, if you pick the fruits off the first year and do not let them ripen, it will cause the plants to make more runners. That is how you get the patch to start and take a good hold. My 2nd year with just 6 plants, yielded 12 pints of berries. That more than payed for the plants I purchased.This year I am expecting enough fruit to put some in the freezer for mid-winter enjoyment.
Click on this link to read more about how to grow strawberries. Then I suggest finding your plants early so you can get them started as soon as possible. Have a BERRY NICE Spring!