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By Leebugs

Kerry, Ireland Ie

Sorry I dont want to use the "W" when we still trying to figure out what happened to summer, but I am trying to be proactive as well. I was thinking about reducing a patch of lawn and starting a new bed dedicated to growing berries such as raspberries, blackberries, etc. I suspect though that the main problem is going to be wind as I live in a virtual wind tunnel and its the biggest blight in my garden.

1. Should I bother?
2. If we agree its worth it, how best should I prepare the soil which, in this patch, is almost pure pencil? (I've had to import soil, compost and manure since I started this garden 4 years ago - favorite garden implements are a hammer and chisel and I have been known to use a drill and an auger bit to plant certain bulbs. Sadly, I am not exaggerating at all.)
3. When is best time to plant?

I will coax some supports out of the poor husband for the raspberries but are there any other berries that dont need as much support?

Happy gardening!



As long as the wind is not so strong that it snaps the fruit canes, fruit does better where there is a free passage of air. It reduces the chances of fungal spores landing on the plants.

9 Aug, 2009


Hi Leebugs,
I see you are in Ireland, on the Atlantic coast. There are fabulous gardens like the one at Inverewe on the west coast of northern Scotland, which would be uncultivable because of westerly winds, but they were only established by planting wind breaks with clumps of trees. Do you have the space and conditions to get some kind of really hardy and tough hedge going which would act as a windbreak so you could succeed with your cane fruits? Lots of trees will establish through stony or slatey ground once they get going.

9 Aug, 2009


Nope Bertiefox. Sadly I only have an acre and there's no more space for trees (we went a bit OTT and have got lots of trees). This bed would be on one side of a large expense of lawn and pond so I cant protect it from wind from the East but from the West there is at list a row of Dogwoods for most of the year. Thanks to you and Owdboggy for the advice so far.

9 Aug, 2009


I know it looks a bit ugly, but because we get a very very cold North easterly wind n April which cuts almost everything to the ground, we have used Windbreak material to reduce the strength of the wind. There are various types which it might be worth investigating. You are not trying to stop the wind rther to break it up.
Unless the prevailing wind is salt laden, I reckon you can grow almost any cane or bush fruit. Blackberries, loganberries, raspberries, jostaberry and such would not care about the wind. Any of the currants would be ok too, given a little shelter from the strongest gusts.
As to your soil problem, well all those mentioned like well drained soil. So, you only need to continue the way you are already doing, with the addition of humus, to get any of the afore mentioned to grow.

9 Aug, 2009

How do I say thanks?

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