First-year canes are called primocanes. They emerge from the soil and grow but with most varieties, the primocanes do not fruit. Primocanes become floricanes the second year. Floricanes fruit and then die. Each cane lives only two years.
Pinching (tipping) the top 2 to 3 inches of the primocanes increases branching and fruiting the next year. Tipping can improve yield by 3 to 5 times and is vital if you wish to have good yields.
The height and frequency of tipping varies with species and whether the variety fruits on primocanes or not. Those that do fruit on primocanes are often referred to as “everbearing.” Those that only produce fruit the second year, we will call “traditional.” Below is a listing of the different methods used.
Blackberries: Traditional - Tip at 4 feet
Blackberries: Everbearing - Tip at 25 to 30 inches high. Laterals are also tipped when they reach 25 to 30 inches.
Black Raspberries - Tip at 3 feet
Purple Raspberries - Tip at 36 to 40 inches
Red Raspberries - Do not tip. (Ward Upham)