This is my first year growing raspberries. I read that I should removed suckers. How can I tell which shoots are suckers and which are just new shoots of the main raspberry bush?
Where are you reading this stuff? All raspberry canes start out as "suckers". That is how they propagate -- by suckering.
There is no such thing as a "main" raspberry bush. Raspberries are canefruits that spread underground, and renovate themselves every year. The old roots from the old canes poop out, or should poop out entirely, and be replaced by brand new canes from -- suckers, that will send out new roots.
There is a time to thin out raspberry canes, and that is when they become so thick as to negatively impact the productivity of the canes. When you see this happen, remove some of the canes by pruning them at the base. But if this is your first year for raspberries, you're not there yet.
Don Yellman, Great Falls, VA
I'll have to look to see where I read this info but the exact sentence was something to the effect of "Remove suckers as soon as they appear as they will divert energy from the main plant."
They went on to say the berries would be smaller if too many suckers were left to grow.
So, this is not correct? I should not be removing any new sprouts coming up out of the ground around my raspberry plants? (BTW, I have both ever-bearing and summer-bearing if this makes any difference).
Thanks for the help.