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What are the Different Types of Raspberries?

Mary McMahon
Updated May 16, 2024
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Raspberries are extremely popular plants because they produce small, sweet berries that are packed with intense flavor. The berries come in a number of varieties, although most consumers are only familiar with the classic red ones. Different varieties have different flavor profiles, and they grow differently, depending on the location. Raspberries can be eaten out of hand, included in fruit salads, added to pies and tarts, or used in preserves and jams. Especially in the summer, these berries are a perennial favorite.

As a general rule, raspberries are very easy to grow. The berries are extremely hardy, and they do well in temperate zones, as long as they are planted in a sunny spot with well drained soil. They will need support in the form of a trellis or fence. Raspberries also require pruning to produce well, since the canes die back after they produce fruit. Different varietals need to be pruned at different frequencies, but all need to be pruned after the fruiting season to make way for fresh canes. Some also like to be “topped” during the growing season, meaning that the gardener removes the upper portion of growth.

All raspberries fall into two categories: summer bearing and ever bearing, sometimes known as fall bearing. The canes of summer bearing plants take two years to mature, and they will produce fruit throughout the summer. Ever bearing raspberries produce one crop on the top half of the canes in the early fall, and follow with another crop on the lower half in the following spring. The pruning needs of each type are different, so gardeners should make sure that they know what kind they have before they start pruning.

Red raspberries are perhaps the most commonly known. Some summer bearing varieties include Meeker, Willamette, Newburgh, Candy, Latham, Chilcotin, Boyne, and Tulameen. Popular ever bearing varieties are Heritage, Amity, Summit, Dinkum, Autumn Bliss, and Caroline. These berries tend to be the easiest to care for, and regional garden centers will have more plants specifically targeted at the local area.

Raspberries can also be found in more unusual colors. Yellow or golden varieties include Fall Golds and Golden Summits. These fruits have the same rich flavor as red ones, but they are a sunny yellow color instead. Consumers can also find dark purple raspberry cultivars such as Royalty and Brandywine. Black raspberries like Cumberland and Mungers are more susceptible to disease, but they yield rich, intensely sweet fruit which is popular in jams and preserves.

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Mary McMahon
By Mary McMahon

Ever since she began contributing to the site several years ago, Mary has embraced the exciting challenge of being a DelightedCooking researcher and writer. Mary has a liberal arts degree from Goddard College and spends her free time reading, cooking, and exploring the great outdoors.

Discussion Comments
By julies — On Jul 11, 2011

@manykitties2 - As far as taste goes, I think it depends on your personal preference. I have some premium red raspberry plants and some wild black raspberries in my yard and even though the red ones are nice and plump, my personal favorite is the black ones. My husband is just the opposite, and prefers the red ones.

I have also used both of them in cooking to make pies and jellies. Once they are cooked down with the sugar, they both seem to hold up about the same as far as the texture goes. Sometimes it is nice to combine different flavors of raspberries for the best taste and flavor.

By manykitties2 — On May 19, 2011

Can anyone share what type of raspberries you like the most and why?

I am interested in cooking with them and wonder if there is a variety that holds up best in recipes. I would like something that really holds onto its rich flavor.

I think raspberries are absolutely amazing in pie and added into cheesecake. I have tried oodles of recipes and really want to find the perfect raspberry.

I love how versatile raspberries are, and one of the best things to do in the fall is make some oatmeal and mash the berries into it. It tastes amazing and adds a few more vitamins to your day.

By Sara007 — On May 19, 2011

Growing raspberries in your backyard can be a great activity for you and the kids. I love that they are easy to care for and yet still provide enough interaction to get the kids interested in healthy foods.

I recommend the ever-bearing raspberry plants, as it is great to have a crop twice a year. The berries are delicious and make a nice light snack.

If you want to find a variety of raspberry that is local you can ask at your local seed supply store. I have found them very helpful in the past and the staff is usually friendly and knowledgeable.

Mary McMahon
Mary McMahon

Ever since she began contributing to the site several years ago, Mary has embraced the exciting challenge of being a...

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