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Best method to dry raspberry leaves?

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Best method to dry raspberry leaves?

Post Number:#1  Unread postby MR Tatt » Sun Jul 30, 2017 3:13 am


Hi Everybody,

I have LOTS of raspberry plants on my property and was wondering what the best method of drying and storing the leaves would be.

Thanks
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Re: Best method to dry raspberry leaves?

Post Number:#2  Unread postby Rainey » Sun Jul 30, 2017 6:05 am


If you have plenty of room I'd suggest cutting whole young plants (or branches if they're bigger), tying a bunch together by their stem ends and hanging them out of direct sun and where there is good ventilation. Anyone who had fewer plant or less space could dry individual leaves on screens. We have a loft where we store hay and also have plenty of room for this kind of drying. We dry raspberries to give to goat does before kidding and rabbit does before kindling if it isn't a time of year when we can get fresh.

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Re: Best method to dry raspberry leaves?

Post Number:#3  Unread postby MaggieJ » Sun Jul 30, 2017 7:53 am


:yeahthat:

Cutting and bunching the canes is by far the easiest way, if you have the room. If not, you can dry the leaflets either on screens, as Rainey suggested, or in the large mesh bags that onions or oranges come in. Don't stuff the leaves in tight--they need enough ventilation to dry without getting mouldy.

Raspberry leaves are excellent for kindling does, but they are also a valuable, safe food plant for rabbits and a remedy for diarrhea. And the rabbits do enjoy them! :)

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Re: Best method to dry raspberry leaves?

Post Number:#4  Unread postby alforddm » Sun Jul 30, 2017 10:41 am


I just want to mention, if you live in an area that is hot with high humidity, it's often better to dry IN direct sunlight. This dries the item faster and helps prevent mold, especially with items with thick stems. You will lose a small amount of nutrition but it is small. All hay in my area is dried this way. When I tried to dry out of direct sunlight, it went all dingy and brown rather than staying nice and green like the stuff dried in sunlight.

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Re: Best method to dry raspberry leaves?

Post Number:#5  Unread postby MaggieJ » Sun Jul 30, 2017 4:24 pm


Good point, Alforddm. :goodjob:

We have fairly high humidity here in June, July, August, but we are also blessed with strong breezes off the Lake, which help a lot with the drying. Keeping the bundles fairly small helps too.

I didn't realize that sun-dried leaves would stay nice and green. :oops:

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Re: Best method to dry raspberry leaves?

Post Number:#6  Unread postby MR Tatt » Sun Jul 30, 2017 4:49 pm


Thanks for all the replies so far. It is very nice to hear that I can dry them on the cane. Cant they eat the leaves and cane, or just the leaves? So far all I have been giving them is the leaves. I have plenty of room for drying them so I am hoping to get enough dried and saved that will last until next year's raspberry bushes are ready to do the same process all over again.
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Re: Best method to dry raspberry leaves?

Post Number:#7  Unread postby MaggieJ » Sun Jul 30, 2017 6:03 pm


They certainly CAN eat the canes, but they may or may not be enthusiastic about them. Likely they will nibble the bark off and leave the stick. The spines will not harm them. A lot of their favourite plants have spines.

Drying on the cane is best if you have room for it. Drying the leaflets only is an option for people who have less space for storage.

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Re: Best method to dry raspberry leaves?

Post Number:#8  Unread postby Rainey » Sun Jul 30, 2017 7:29 pm


MaggieJ wrote:They certainly CAN eat the canes, but they may or may not be enthusiastic about them. Likely they will nibble the bark off and leave the stick. The spines will not harm them. A lot of their favourite plants have spines.

Drying on the cane is best if you have room for it. Drying the leaflets only is an option for people who have less space for storage.


Why is drying on the cane better, Maggie? And is that true for other things we dry? I'm wondering because we've been drying willow enough to feed through the winter (rabbits and goats) and we've begun stripping off the leaves from the branches once they've dried and storing them in a bin. The leaves stay whole so I thought they wouldn't lose any quality, but maybe there is something I'm missing. So much to learn--so many different factors to consider.

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Re: Best method to dry raspberry leaves?

Post Number:#9  Unread postby MaggieJ » Sun Jul 30, 2017 8:07 pm


Rainey, I should choose my words more carefully. :oops: It certainly was no more than an off-the-cuff opinion.

I meant mainly that it was quicker, easier, more efficient, but I do also believe that the stems themselves have valuable nutrients, particularly in the case of willow. Most of the food value is probably in the leaves, but consider how much of the bark and buds the wild rabbits eat. I know my rabbits were crazy about willow bark and twigs, even when they had a good supply of mixed greens.

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Re: Best method to dry raspberry leaves?

Post Number:#10  Unread postby MR Tatt » Sun Jul 30, 2017 10:36 pm


I gave a few of my rabbits some fresh raspberry cane sections with leaves attached. They loved them.
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Re: Best method to dry raspberry leaves?

Post Number:#11  Unread postby Rainey » Mon Jul 31, 2017 5:33 am


MaggieJ wrote:Rainey, I should choose my words more carefully. :oops: It certainly was no more than an off-the-cuff opinion.

I meant mainly that it was quicker, easier, more efficient, but I do also believe that the stems themselves have valuable nutrients, particularly in the case of willow. Most of the food value is probably in the leaves, but consider how much of the bark and buds the wild rabbits eat. I know my rabbits were crazy about willow bark and twigs, even when they had a good supply of mixed greens.


Ours eat the bark and smaller twigs when willow is fresh, but in winter tend to just eat off the leaves and to prefer fresh woody things, usually apple twigs. And I was thinking of the care I take with culinary and medicinal herbs we use ourselves not to break the leaves, believing I learned somewhere that when left whole until use they retain more flavor/value.

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Re: Best method to dry raspberry leaves?

Post Number:#12  Unread postby MaggieJ » Mon Jul 31, 2017 7:14 pm


If they are getting fresh twigs in winter, it is not surprising they turn their wriggly noses up at dried ones. :lol: If they are leaving them uneaten, it's just one more thing to clean out. In that case, I'd just store the dried leaves too.

My rabbitry was a small colony and I don't think I ever applied myself to streamlining my methods the way you do. I did what seemed to work. When I started with natural feeding I could not find much useful information, so I kind of got in the habit of winging it. Nice to see you improving on that, Rainey! :)

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Re: Best method to dry raspberry leaves?

Post Number:#13  Unread postby Rainey » Tue Aug 01, 2017 11:37 am


MaggieJ wrote:If they are getting fresh twigs in winter, it is not surprising they turn their wriggly noses up at dried ones. :lol: If they are leaving them uneaten, it's just one more thing to clean out. In that case, I'd just store the dried leaves too.

My rabbitry was a small colony and I don't think I ever applied myself to streamlining my methods the way you do. I did what seemed to work. When I started with natural feeding I could not find much useful information, so I kind of got in the habit of winging it. Nice to see you improving on that, Rainey! :)


This is moving off the topic of drying raspberry leaves, but I just want to say how much I (and I'm sure many other folks here) appreciate your pioneering natural feed, your patience with newbie questions, your continuing presence here even when you're done with raising rabbits yourself.
Don't know about improving, but this time of year when we're all tired, I often think and say, "we can't work any harder--we've got to work smarter" :)

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Re: Best method to dry raspberry leaves?

Post Number:#14  Unread postby MaggieJ » Tue Aug 01, 2017 2:03 pm


Rainey wrote: This is moving off the topic of drying raspberry leaves, but I just want to say how much I (and I'm sure many other folks here) appreciate your pioneering natural feed, your patience with newbie questions, your continuing presence here even when you're done with raising rabbits yourself.
Don't know about improving, but this time of year when we're all tired, I often think and say, "we can't work any harder--we've got to work smarter" :)


Thanks, Rainey. :D I do feel I did my bit for natural feeding, and it's really a good feeling I get to see others carrying on with it and building on that beginning.

As for working smarter rather than harder . . . I find myself saying that all the time! :lol:

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Re: Best method to dry raspberry leaves?

Post Number:#15  Unread postby MR Tatt » Tue Aug 01, 2017 11:12 pm


Rainey wrote:This is moving off the topic of drying raspberry leaves, but I just want to say how much I (and I'm sure many other folks here) appreciate your pioneering natural feed, your patience with newbie questions, your continuing presence here even when you're done with raising rabbits yourself.
Don't know about improving, but this time of year when we're all tired, I often think and say, "we can't work any harder--we've got to work smarter" :)

If worried about being off topic and what I would think, I don't mind at all. I am quiet yet learning from what is being posted. :)
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