Raspberries or Strawberries – Which Is the Better Fruit to Grow?

I was asked this question the other day by a close friend who is just starting their gardening journey, so I thought this would be a great opportunity to write a quick article explaining what I said.

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Which is better? Well, that depends on your needs and wants really!

We grow both types of fruit on purpose, and we have some wild raspberries growing on the outskirts of our property. After a few summers of growing, I can clearly outline the pros and cons of each and which to grow based on your needs!


Delicious and beloved by all animals.

Types of Strawberries

There are two main types of strawberries, June-bearing and ever-bearing.

June-bearing means it bares fruit in June only, and produces lots and lots of fruit.

Ever-bearing means it will continue to produce fruit all summer long.

Strawberry Runners

Strawberries grow quickly via runners they produce; each runner grows its own leaves and fruit heads and produces another runner.

Before you know it, the garden bed will be covered in runners and maybe not too much fruit. The more the plant focuses on producing runners, the less berries it will produce since it’s devoting it’s energy into expanding.

A strawberry runner

To increase the amount of fruit from ever-bearing strawberries, you need to cut the runners off the plant.

For the everyday gardener or beginner gardener, I would recommend getting the ever-bearing strawberry variety. There’s nothing better than fruit all season long.

If one day you want to sell strawberries or have a PYO strawberry farm, then June-bearing is the way to go.

Strawberry Soil

Strawberries are not picky about the soil they’re in, they thrive in a variety of soil pH and hardness levels.

Right now, ours share a bed with blueberry plants that require very acidic soil. Strawberry roots are also very shallow and sometimes aren’t even IN the dirt when the runners grow berries!

The best thing to do is to provide them with the most optimal soil – that includes good compost and soft workable soil.

Strawberry Growth

Additionally, strawberries can be grown vertically or horizontally (on the ground). Growing them in a Vertical Planter that cascades down with spaces for runners is a very popular way to grow strawberries right now.

Vertical gardening is on the rage and while I haven’t tried this one personally, I haven’t heard a bad thing about it. 

Some Issues With Growing Strawberries

1. Strawberries are ‘invasive’

I put that in quotations because I believe that ‘invasive’ is thrown around only when it’s referred to a species that ‘someone’ doesn’t like. Weeds are called invasive because they grow where you don’t want them to grow.

But most plants, in some way, are invasive. If strawberry runners are not maintained, they will grow more and more and more runners until the bed is overrun. Be sure to maintain the runners!

2. Strawberries are loved by all and get eaten by all

This is in reference to organic gardening, (which I truly hope you are doing!). When you have organic strawberries that aren’t protected properly from your native wildlife, you will have to pay a hefty nature tax.

We’ve been working on the perfect protection for our bed at this property. It took us most of the 2023 growing season to figure it out, but we got there eventually so next summer our bed will be perfect!

Protect Strawberries By:
  • Cover with netting mesh to protect from birds and other small animals
  • Painting large (roughly palm sized) rocks red at the beginning of the season
    • When an animal tries to eat it, they’ll realize that red does not mean food.
  • Growing in a raised bed with over 6” of space between the top of the soil and the top of the bed.
    • This way when the strawberry plants grow the green tops will be a natural cover and the birds and animals won’t notice or look for the strawberries hidden beneath

3. Early strawberries tend not to get pollinated

Hand pollination in the early spring is key. We found that out here when our strawberries first started to flower, almost all the flowers turned black and we didn’t get anything. We started to hand pollinate and it really helped with production.

As the season got warmer and more flowers bloomed, we found that the strawberries were finally getting naturally pollinated by insects and bees.

As a side note, having lots of early spring flowers could help with natural insect pollination of those early berries!

We have a video on how to hand pollinate your strawberry flowers here.


These wonderful berries are very delicious and beloved by all, raspberries are an interesting crop and a bit more complicated that strawberries.

I’ll be trying to keep this article high-level. There are two types of raspberry plants, ever-bearing (sometimes called autumns-bearing) and summer-bearing.

Types of Raspberries

A summer-bearing raspberry plant has one main stem (aka cane) that grew last year and produces all the raspberries that grow this year. After all the fruit has grown, for the last half the year the plant focuses on the new cane growth.

An ever-bearing raspberry plant has lots of green growth and bushes out and produces raspberries on all of the bushes on the plant. This variety can get very tall and bushy over time.

The canes produced by an ever-bearing will bloom in summer and again in autumn. The plant should be called a twice-bearing instead of ever-bearing.

We have both types on our property and I truly love both types of plants.

Additionally, you also have countless varieties of raspberries, what we have and what majority of people will see, are black raspberries or red raspberries.

Black raspberries start off as red and turn into a black/purple colour in it’s final formation. Whereas red raspberries just turn into that brilliant, traditional red we are all used to seeing.

Raspberry Soil

When it comes to soil, raspberries are a little picker than strawberries. They like well draining clay-type soil and my property has lots of that – hence the reason we have so many.

They also prefer their soil a bit more acidic, but not so much so that they won’t grow in low pH level soils like blueberries. 

Raspberries can grow to be big plants, unlike strawberries, they can’t really be grown vertically so space is required for them to flourish. 

Some Issues Growing Raspberries 
1. Raspberries need a lot of space to grow.

Each year they get bigger and longer and produce more and more fruit. If you are looking for a small space saving fruit variety long-term, raspberries are not the way to go.

2. Raspberries are loved by all and get eaten by all

However, they tend to be eaten less savagely compared to strawberries. In our experience, once covered with a netting mesh cover, the raspberries are safe.

3. Raspberries Have A Shorter Growing Season

Raspberry season tends to run for the month of July, give or take a few weeks. Our first raspberry was in June and our last was end of July. The ever-bearing raspberry is just starting to form flower buds in mid-August.

Which Fruit is Better Strawberries or Raspberries?

That is truly up to you and your family’s gardening dreams. I will continue to grow both because we can. Each passing year you gain more practical knowledge and learn which is better for you. 

If you’re in a small condo or town-home, ever-bearing strawberries would probably be the better plant to grow because it can grow in the vertical planter, they aren’t picky with soil and they bear fruit all year. 

If you’re in a suburban yard, a raspberry bush would be great along fencing or on the edge of the property, similar to the popular suburban hosta plants. 

We love raspberries during the season, we get handfuls to eat at a time and one day perhaps we’ll be able to have enough to freeze dry or make some fruit leather with it.

We also really love our ever-bearing strawberry patch, we are getting 4-8 strawberries a day in August and it’s a perfect stream of fruit for us. 

Hopefully this article helped shed some light for you to discover what fruit would be best for you and your home. 

If it did make sure you check out our growing guides and seed saving guides that we have. We are growing our website with more articles all the time, and we invite you to grow with us. If you have any questions about strawberries, raspberries or would like to share some of your knowledge with us please leave a comment below.

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