What Are Raspberries?
Raspberries are edible fruits belonging to different plant species from the Rubus genus of the rose family which is mostly from the Idaeobatus subgenus. The name Raspberry also applies to the plants which are perennial and have woody stems. The origin of the name raspberry might be related to Old English rough or rasp due to its rough appearance.
Benefits And Uses Of Raspberry
Raspberries contain different vitamins and minerals that are beneficial to the body, some of the health benefits associated with Raspberry include brain power, heart health, diabetes management, digestion and detox, healthy eyes, obesity management among others. Raspberries are a rich source of antioxidants which help boost the immune system in many ways including helping to protect the body from cancerous growth. Raspberries are grown for commercial processing as juice, fruit, and puree or as dry fruit to be used in some grocery products. Ideally, raspberries have been grown for the fresh fruit market. Raspberry leaves are either used as fresh or dried to make herbal teas or herbal and traditional medicine even though there is no valid scientific research to support the claim as medicinal.
Cultivation Of Raspberry
Different types of raspberries are cultivated in three to nine hardy zones. Traditionally, raspberries are planted as dormant canes even though tender plug plants produced through tissue culture has become a common mode of planting. There is a specific design of a production system for raspberries known as long cane production. The process involves growing the raspberry canes for a whole year in a region with Northern climate such as Washington, Scotland or Oregon, where there is ample chilling requirement for the buds to break. After the Canes have attained the chilling period, they are then dug into the ground with roots and replanted in an area with warmer climate such as Spain where they can now flower and produce an early season crop.
Raspberry plants are planted with a spacing of between two to six per meter in a well-drained and fertile soil. Most of the time raspberries are either planted in lifted ridges or beds if there is no root rot issue. Raspberry flowers are a major source of nectar for honey bees and other pollinating insects. Raspberries are robust and invasive since they can regenerate by use of basal shoots and extended underground shoots that maturate into individual plants with roots. Raspberry plants can be stooge new canes a few distance from the main plant thus giving the plant a chance to spread well but can dominate a garden if left unsupervised. Raspberries are usually propagated by use of cuttings as they easily root in moist soil. Raspberries are harvested when they come off the receptacle and have a deep red, purple, golden yellow or black color depending on the species and cultivar, indicating that the raspberries are ripe and most succulent. Excess raspberry fruits can either be frozen or used in the production of raspberry jam.
Production And Top Producing Nations Of Raspberry
The total world production of raspberries was 578,233 tons in 2013, with Russia supplying 25% of this amount which accounted for 143.0 thousand tons. According to FAOSTAT other major raspberry producers were Poland with 121.0 thousand tons, the US accounting for 91.3 thousand ton, Serbia with 68.5 thousand tons, and Mexico with 30.4 thousand tons of the world's total raspberry production.