Red, purple, or gold – raspberries are always delicious and nutritious! I just ate a handful of perfectly firm, sweet red raspberries. Yum! I love them enough that I’ve decided to try growing my own.
I’m familiar with blackberries, huckleberries, and strawberries. All of them grew wild near our farm. Raspberries did not so this experiment feels like foreign territory.
Research tells me raspberries grow well in zones 5-9. I’m in 8a so the climate should be friendly enough. I’m planting in a raised bed, but chose a variety that can also thrive in a container. It should grow to a height of 2-3 feet and width of 3-4 feet. I’m not sure whether I’ll get fruit this year, but I’ll be excited to have healthy growth this year and fruit the next.
The idea of walking out to the back yard to pick fruits and vegetables appeals to me for many reasons. The first is freshness. This seems especially relevant for raspberries. Because the torus remains on the plant, the fruit is hollow in the center. This makes the berries delicate and easy to damage. Fresh will mean a longer shelf life.
Fresh will also mean more vibrant flavor. Any fruit is best when it can fully ripen in place then be picked and eaten quickly.
Nutrition is also highest in freshly picked fruit. Raspberries are packed with nutrients. One cup contains 1.5 grams of protein and 54% of the recommended daily intake of vitamin C.
These gems also contain:
- Manganese: 41% of the RDI
- Vitamin K: 12% of the RDI
- Vitamin E: 5% of the RDI
- B vitamins: 4–6% of the RDI
- Iron: 5% of the RDI
- Magnesium: 7% of the RDI
- Phosphorus: 4% of the RDI
- Potassium: 5% of the RDI
- Copper: 6% of the RDI
And they’re full of fiber – 8 grams per cup or 32% of the recommended daily intake for men and 21% RDI for women.
The goodness doesn’t stop there. Raspberries are high in antioxidants and tannins that may help control blood sugar and prevent arthritis and cancer.
You may not be able to eat enough raspberries to fully prevent a given disease, but including them in your meal plan has many benefits.
Grabbing raspberries off the back porch for breakfast in the summer sounds divine! And I like knowing the berries have been grown without chemical sprays.
And while I prefer eating them right off the plant, raspberries can also be enjoyed in sorbet, cookies, tarts, brownies, coffee cake, and atop yogurt, ice cream or cheesecake.
Don’t hesitate to reward yourself with a sweet, colorful treat! Raspberries are always delicious and nutritious.