I'm new to these forums and looking for advice as I build up my garden. Currently I'm working on clearing an area that's lower that the rest (about 400 sq ft), where I intend to put a chicken coop and six chickens. I'll be erecting a fence around the outside of the lowered area, and I thought that maybe a nice way of making it hard for dogs to come and bother my chickens (dogs roam the neighborhood freely) would be to put some raspberry plants all around the outside of the fence.
I have lots of questions about this, the main one being, what kind of brambles would be the best fit for what I want? Basically, I want some natural barbed wire that bears nice berries. I don't like the hard seeds in the local blackberries that grow--I'll make jelly with them, but I'd rather plant brambles that will bear fruit with softer seeds so they can be eaten off the bushes.
I've learned that I'm pretty much too late in the season to do this now. I live in Mt. Shasta, which is apparently zone 7. We sometimes have long winters (not this year, yay!) and it can get pretty cold, lots of snow. Summers get up in the hundreds but only for about two weeks. Mostly it hovers in the high eighties. Since they are saying we'll be having 80 degree weather this week I guess any bare root plants I might order would die from the shock of being planted.
Fair enough. When is the best time to plant brambles? I've read the fall on some sites and the early spring on others. We can have frosts as late as June.
Also, our soil is dry (even with regular watering) and on the acidic side. Is there a variety that would be better adapted?
Any other advice anyone has would be great. I can tell I'm going to nee guidance eventually to understand the right way to prune. This is especially the case since I want to use the plants as a barrier--the idea of mowing them completely as I've read here and there doesn't work for that goal.
Thanks in advance to all who respond!