Red raspberry is among the most delicately delicious snacks nature has to offer. The berries need no introduction, and they are great for pies, tortes, or even adding to your yogurt or cereal. The leaves are used in herbal tea, imparting a flavor much like black tea but without the caffeine. It is considered safe for children and pregnant females. The fruit is sometimes used for liver support. The entire plant, including the leaves, flowers and fruit are high in antioxidants. The only drawback is that these precious fruits grow on thorn bushes. But you can utilize this as a natural barrier to keep larger animals and even people out of certain areas such as your vegetable garden. Red raspberry is hardy to zone 4.
Growing Instructions: The seeds can be stubborn to germinate. Some growers will pretreat the seeds with a mild sulfuric acid solution or vinegar to help simulate digestion. The seeds are naturally spread in bird droppings, and so they would have been exposed to acids during digestion that help assist germination. So you can begin with a short soak in acid before soaking in water. The acid step is optional, but it should help. The next step would be to place the seeds in hot tap water and let them soak for 24 hours. It is ideal to cold stratify them prior to sowing as well because they normally experience temperature change in the wild. So keeping them in the fridge will simulate winter, and the temperature change after that can help trigger the natural germination responses in the seed. Place them in moist paper towels or any other type of growing medium where it will allow the seeds to remain moist, without mold forming and you will still be able to retrieve the seeds. Keep the seeds in the fridge for up to 90 days. If you’re not sowing the seeds right away, you should keep them in the fridge because this will help this process. After all of this, it will be time to sow the seeds in soil. Sow them 1/8” deep in a fertile soil mix rich in organic matter. As an alternative to cold stratification, in areas where the winters are cold enough, you can also sow the seeds outdoors in the fall, allowing them to experience winter naturally. Germination may take more than one season. For best results, mulch
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