We have fresh raspberries!

Friends, the news is huge. We’re on the edge on of our garden seats, trying not bear too much excitement because unless you’re in Costal Southern California, you would never understand. Yes, the photographs are proof….we can finally grow raspberries.

Unless you’re a huge lover of raspberries, or a Southern California gardener who has struggled with growing berries of any kind, this might be a *yawn* post for you. Please, bear with us with our little celebratory dance because we’ve been dreaming of growing successful fruiting raspberries for a very long time. Every time we visit Oregon and Washington where berries grow like wild weeds, we yearn to be so lucky as to have just one plant to bear some sweet, edible fruit.

Last Summer we did a road trip up through California, Oregon and Washington State. During our entire drive up Oregon and Washington, huge bushes of raspberries and blackberries adorned the highway like weeds-gone-wild. We’d make occasional stops along the road and indulge in some of the wild berries. With each bite, our jealousy grew even more over how abundant these berries were for all the local folks. These people have it good!

Eating fresh, sweet berries falling off the vine are one of life’s simple pleasures. And now we can finally enjoy them in our own backyard. Geek out!

A few months ago we stumbled on a variety of raspberries at our local nursery called Canby Red Raspberries. The tag on the plant said that the raspberries were thornless, abundant and sweet. And most importantly, it would grow well in our region. Previously, we’ve written about finally finding a variety of blueberries that don’t require a long amount of chill hours. So with high hopes, we were excited that these variety of raspberries would do equally well.

Often times, berries thrive in cool, moist climates and our warm, dry weather isn’t ideal to get berries to fruit well. But this variety of Canby Red certainly proved to be fruitful after only 2 months in the ground. For the past few weeks we’ve been harvesting handfuls of super sweet raspberries with a delicate, floral note.

These are the best raspberries we’ve ever tasted. They were so addicting, that we returned to the nursery and got a second plant to grow.

Gardening does that to you. The feeling of love and appreciation for growing food is extremely gratifying because all the hard work to nurture something that gives back such a special gift can never be matched.

Thanks for geeking out with us on this occasion. Now if you’ll excuse us, we’ll head back to the garden and check on our latest planting….blackberries! That’ll be a later post. Finger crossed, the blackberry bush will be equally generous.


Sierra “the veggie hater” wanted a taste… 

she wasn’t sure if she could trust a raspberry…. 

just a little nibble….

a slow nibble…. 

oh wait…. it’s a fruit… I’ll try it. Carefully.

{ 50 comments… read them below or add one }
  1. Pat in SoCal

    Hi… berries look great! And I love the puppy pix. Question: do you cut your raspberries down to the ground in the fall? I’m reading contradictory advice but know that what they do in ND is not the same as SoCal. Also…I have a two year old Heritage bush (horrible thorns) that is sending up huge straight suckers that I would trim off rose bushes but maybe these need to stay. The leaves on them look a little different (longer) than those on the mane canes…but maybe this is the first year cane that will become the fruiting cane? Thoughts anyone? TIA

    1. White on Rice Couple

      Hi Pat,
      Our raspberries are still in their first year, but the response from the gardeners we’ve talked to here in So Cal is that we shouldn’t cut them all back to the ground in the fall. The second year canes are the ones which will fruit. I’d leave them and see what happens next year. Those may be your star canes next spring!

  2. My-Tien

    Sierra is hilarious and those pics of her is adorable!!!

  3. Katie

    I’m so glad I saw this today! I was just talking with some friends about growing raspberries here in Fountain Valley. I have a few planted that have never taken off (got a handful of berries this year, but was hoping for more as it is the second year in the ground), but I’m encouraged to plant more. I’m curious about your trellis system. It looks like you have a wooden trellis attached to your wall with an iron trellis higher up? Is that right? I’m trying to grow them against a wall but haven’t found a good method to copy. :)

    1. White on Rice Couple

      Hi Katie,
      You are correct. It is an evolution of a trellis. I had built the original wood trellis about 8 years ago and it went as high as the iron does now. We had several vines growing on it and last year due to the weight and termite damage the top half broke. In researching a replacement we found the iron decorative fencing at home depot. They were fairly inexpensive and when placed at where the break in the wood was, it was the perfect height. So rather than rebuild the whole trellis, we left the bottom wood section and added the scroll panels to finish the top.
      Good luck with your raspberries and your trellis.

  4. Todd

    Awesome shots! I definitely need to plant one of those in my garden :) The dog is adorable too, btw. One of my dogs loves any fruit, the other (the beagle) only likes meat or carbs hahah

  5. The Prudent Homemaker

    Raspberries did not do well for me here in Las Vegas (cut your berries into fourths; because of the extreme heat, they only got that big! They finally sucumbed to the heat and the plants died as well).

    Blackberries have done well for me. They are smaller than they would be in the Northwest, and the ones at the top will cook in the sun, turning hard and brown (completely unedible). The lower ones do well, though, and they are delicious! We are nearing the end of our blackberry harvest just now, but we’re picking apricots, green plums, and figs. The grapes are getting close.

    Congratulations on growing raspberries. That is really wonderful. I love raspberries. I love that your nursery had big plants, too; that is really, really nice.

  6. EA (The Spicy RD)

    Congratulations! I grew up (and still live) in San Diego and my parents had a very prolific boysenberry bush growing on the hillside, but we never grew any raspberries. I am getting ready to (hopefully) start a garden soon, so you give me hope that berries might possibly be in my future :-). Love the shots of Sierra eating a raspberry-I have to show my own, 10 yo daughter, Sierra, the photos-she will love them!

  7. Andy Salgado

    Awesome Thank you so Much! :)) I truly appreciate you taking the time to comment back!

  8. Andy Salgado

    Hello! I Stumbled on your website a couple weeks ago because of your post on Meyer Lemons and I LOVE this!! I love all of your recipes(the ones I’ve done)
    I had a couple questions which I hope you can help me with. I too live in California(Laguna Niguel) what is the nursery that you went too to get the raspberries because I really would love to grow some myself.

    and off question. What type of camera do you use because you have the most beautiful pictures?

    Thank you!!! :)


    Andy S.

    1. White on Rice Couple

      Hi Andy,
      Thanks so much for the kind words.
      To answer your questions, we got these plants from Green
      Thumb in Lake Forest. Quite close to you. Rogers Gardens in Newport should also have some. I think I even saw Home Depot have thornless Blackberries last time I was in.
      In response to the second question, we are pro photographers so we tend to have some of the better gear, but anyone can take great photos with just about any camera if you capture the light correctly. Some shots will be just from our iPhones. The cameras we do use are Nikon, usually the d3s or d300s. Lenses we love for food and for different reasons are the 50mm 1.4, 60 macro, 105 macro, and the 24-70mm.
      Hope that helps. Have fun plant shopping.
      T & D

  9. Laura (Tutti Dolci)

    Gorgeous raspberry plants, I’m just a bit envious!

  10. Karen

    I know a bassett hound that cleans off all the raspberries that are within her reach on the vines in her backyard. Her sister hound used to pull carrots out of the ground, shake them to get the dirt off and settle down on the grass to gnaw on them. It was great fun to watch!

  11. thyme (Sarah)

    I’ll have to just geek out with you here…because I am sure in so. Texas…it is probably impossible to grow. They have loads of them at our Costco (and they are deliciously sweet). I’ll have to look at the labels and see where the heck are those beauties coming from! Congrats on your rasp. success…and I , too, envy all the lucky dwellers of Oregon and WA state.

  12. Veronica of Muy Bueno

    Oh my….so jealous and your pictures are incredible. I love all berries and these sound perfect as is. They cost a mint here in Germany. Can’t wait to be in the states later this week to gorge on some of my favorite berries while in Seattle. I was thinking of crepes topped with raspberries and Mexican cajeta would be a delicate balance…looking forward to any recipes you post later using this pretty jewel.

  13. Susan in the Boonies

    Such a sweet post. I celebrate your joy with you.
    The deer eat all ours.
    If I were brave enough to face the chiggers, I’d find a way to protect our berries.
    But I’m not.

  14. Kim Bee

    I love this, your garden is gorgeous and those are some pretty raspberries. I am really hoping to put a garden next year. We had a huge one at our last home. We even had a white picket fence around it my hubs built me. We grew everything from the standard tomatoes to corn and ghourds. So much fun growing your own produce.

  15. Dani G.

    Droooool. I bet they’d grow in my area, too. I haven’t had such good luck with our other berry bush attempts. Great tip – thanks!

  16. Jessica

    No way! I’ve seen a few raspberry bushes in the neighborhood (I’m in LA) and I was wondering how they managed it — maybe it was this same variety. I’m so excited to try growing them.

    In the meantime, my favorite raspberry recipes are the Smitten Kitchen raspberry buttermilk cake and raspberry crisp that I have no idea where to find again but is a pretty basic. So good!

    1. Jessica

      I found it – it wasn’t a crisp. Raspberry brown sugar brulee, also Smitten Kitchen. http://smittenkitchen.com/2010/07/raspberry-brown-sugar-gratin/

  17. Yadsia @ShopCookMake

    I laughed so much with Sierra’s pics trying the raspberry! Dogs are so funny!

  18. Sue/the view from great island

    So there’s hope for berry growing in southern California yet! I left behind the most incredible blackberry and black raspberry bushes in New England…

  19. Margaret

    Congrats on the raspberries!!!! Perfect timing to enjoy them…
    I loved Sierra´s face!!!!

    Thanks for sharing!!!!

  20. Marissa | Pinch and Swirl

    I’m so jealous – we’re at least a month away from raspberries here in the high desert! Could Sierra be any cuter?

  21. tisse's mom

    wow, that is a great accomplishment!!! what are you going to make?
    we have lots of berry bushes that come up every year and every year FRUITLESS. i pull them all out and loandbehold, their shining stickers are back smiling and traveling….

    1. terri

      are they raspberries? most raspberries only produce fruit on the second year canes, so if you’re pulling them up every year…

    2. White on Rice Couple

      So far we haven’t gotten past straight hand to mouth. We’ll have to have bigger pickings before we use any in recipes. Just too tasty straight up.

  22. Christyna (Baker With a Cause)

    Absolutely loving those pictures of Sierra trying the raspberry with hesitance. Too funny, lol! Congrats on the raspberries. Wish I lived near you guys… Well, maybe it’s better that I don’t since I might be that unwelcome neighbor trying to constantly bask in your garden and asking a billion questions about gardens, food, and photography 😉

  23. Lisa Dowling

    i love how dogs will trust you if you have built a good relationship with them. her tentative but pointed way of tasting is so sweet. it’ll be interesting to see if you have to fight the birds for the berries. but they look so lovely, like jewels!

  24. Mrs Ergül

    How envious you have me there! Gorgeous looking homegrown raspberries!

  25. Lauren

    One of the top reasons why I love living in Oregon!! :)

  26. Alicia

    Love the photos of Sierra! So cute. :)

  27. Chris

    Does Sierra’s last photo show that those rasberries were sour? ;-p Congrats! I know how it’s like when something finally grows in your garden. I’m eagerly waiting for my first strawberries…

  28. Leah

    Which variety of blueberries did you find performed the best? I live in Los Angeles and have been growing a blueberry bush for the last 3 years, and this year’s warmer winter/spring weather really screwed up my blueberry yield. I’m just now noticing some nicely ripened berries (very few, mind you – most of the buds never matured and fell off during the time when they normally would have been fully ripe). Even the birds didn’t bother with my blueberry crop this year!

    1. White on Rice Couple

      Hard to say which ones are best yet since 2 of the varieties are on their first year. They all have had good flavor and have grown well once we started watering them a little more than we first started out with. The Bountiful Blues are our oldest ones. At struggled a bit until we mulched it really well, upped the water, and made sure to fertilize regularly. Now it has leafed and fruited out quite nicely. Our other two are doing well (Misty Early Season and Jewel) both have a lot of nice growth and the berries ripen, although we usually have to pick them a touch early in order to beat the Mockingbirds to them. The Jewel’s fruit is super plump.

  29. brandi

    Maggie did that same tiny nibble with a piece of carrot last night and then left it on the kitchen floor right behind my foot. Dogs are so funny.

    the raspberries are gorgeous! ours should be in soon, too. i can’t wait!

  30. LiztheChef

    Call me a geek, I go nuts over the idea of growing these here in San Diego!

  31. Jennifer

    Congratulations! That’s quite an accomplishment. Love the pictures of Sierra.

  32. Kay

    Hooray for raspberries! And Sierra is just too adorable!

  33. Jen Yu

    yay for raspberries and DOUBLE yay for sierra trying them out! :) these photos made my day. kaweah sends licks and wags xo


    Congrats!!! Enjoy your bounty! Berries grow like weeds in Upstate NY also! Love the dog pics…LOL!!!

  35. Katrina @ Warm Vanilla Sugar

    Amazing! So jealous!

  36. Amanda@EasyPeasyOrganic

    I can totally relate! I live in Queensland, Australia, now after a childhood in Iowa with raspberries growing wild in the back yard … we totally can’t grow them here and as a result they’re a GAZILLION dollars. So I gorge whenever I head back to the US :)

    And Cay – PAVLOVA! With heaps of cream. The best vessel for raspberries, hands down.

  37. Cay

    Raspberries are my favorite summer treat, and I’m so jealous that you managed to grow some of your own! They look fabulous. Any recipes to suggest that really highlight fresh raspberries?

    1. White on Rice Couple

      We haven’t gotten past the point of eating them straight up yet to start thinking about using them in recipes. We’d love to hear others’ suggestions. Thanks for yours Amanda!

      1. El

        Homemade Ispahan… : )

  38. Madonna

    Iron Chef, Michael Symon said that raspberry is the only food he won’t eat. I thought that was shocking, but I guess that means more for us. As always beautiful photos.

    1. White on Rice Couple

      I might have to re-evaluate my opinion of him. 😉 JK. But you’re right, it does leave more for us!

  39. Magda

    hehehe she looks so cute eating that raspberry. I wish I had some of those fresh berries! You are so lucky to have a garden!

  40. Averie @ Averie Cooks

    My dad had raspberry plants when I was growing up and between the birds, the bugs, and the weather, it’s amazing that there were ANY…but when they come into season, nothing better than fresh homegrown berries. CONGRATS!

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