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Grow raspberries with a little help from your grass clippings.
Grass clippings are valuable garden additions and should never be allowed to leave the property. You can leave the clippings on the lawn, where they’ll break down and green up the growing grass; you can add them to the compost where they’ll help heat things up; or you can use them to mulch the raspberry patch. Raspberries benefit from a 2.5-cm (1-in.) mulch of fresh clippings, applied twice a year – when the lawn is first cut in spring and again about July 1. Apply the mulch around the root zone, covering the entire bed or row and extending about 15 cm (6 in.) past to reduce creeping weeds. The mulch will add needed nitrogen as well as nutrients and organic matter, and it will help cool the roots, reduce weeds and lessen watering. Don’t make it more than an inch deep, though: overly thick grass mulch can prevent water from penetrating. Grass clippings also benefit blackberries and tayberries. While you’re at it, you can also apply an organic berry food. Applying both at once works effectively and saves time. Do not fertilize or feed after July 1. Raspberries will absorb their last feed by mid August, at which point growth slows in preparation for winter.