Blackcurrants

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andynberry

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Blackcurrants
« on: October 05, 2006, 22:00 »
:idea:  I heeled in some blackcurrant last year, which have rooted quite well. Any idea when the best time is to move them to their final growing position? Do I need to prune back to the ground?

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James

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Blackcurrants
« Reply #1 on: October 06, 2006, 08:59 »
Blackcurrant bushes need constant renewal to ensure heavy crops. Older branches will bear fruit, but quantity and quality decline with age. For this reason new bushes are planted deeply to form a stool that produces vigorous young branches annually from below ground. These are then used to replace older ones cut out after harvest.

Each year remove about one third of the oldest stems - the bark is very dark to the point of being black - and any that are weak or very low. Always cut back to ground level or to a strong new shoot. You can combine pruning with picking the fruit, or wait until winter.

from http://www.bbc.co.uk/gardening/basics/techniques/pruning_prunesoftfruit.shtml

And from the RHS site

Training: initial pruning - grow as stooled bushes - i.e. a number of shoots growing from ground level. Plant 2.5cm (1in) deeper than before then cut back all shoots to 2.5cm (1in) from soil level.

Pruning young bushes: prune in winter. For the first three years, if growth is strong prune lightly (i.e. removing weak and low-lying growths), but if growth is weak prune hard, cutting at least half the shoots to ground level

Cropping - mature bushes: prune in winter, cutting out one third of the growths annually - old unproductive wood, weak and low-growing stems ( to stimulate strong growth from or near ground level).

http://www.rhs.org.uk/advice/profiles0600/cane_bush.asp

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DD.

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Blackcurrants
« Reply #2 on: October 06, 2006, 09:49 »
As regards the time to plant, my book says to take cuttings in October & move to final position the following October, so now's about the right time.

I took cuttings myself this time last year, rooted very well & will shortly be planting them out.

I've got some cracking bushes, which I 'found' under nettles when I took my first plot on. They had not been touched for 5 years. Gave them a good pruning and they've been heavily laden for the past 4 years. That's nine years they been there at least & still going strong!
Did it really tell you to do THAT on the packet?

Seeds are SOWN, planting's for plants (and bulbs & tubers)!

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phaxl

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Healing in?
« Reply #3 on: October 09, 2006, 06:31 »
Sorry to sound so dumb but...
What is healing in for?
I assume you compact the soil around a plant, but why is it so important for fruits?

TIA

Robb
Robb

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phaxl

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Blackcurrants
« Reply #4 on: October 09, 2006, 06:33 »
ps Sorry for the spelling!
Heel not Heal,
Maybe it right on both acounts!

Robb

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Oliver

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Re: Heeling in?
« Reply #5 on: October 10, 2006, 15:50 »
Quote from: "phaxl"
Sorry to sound so dumb but...
What is heeling in for?
I assume you compact the soil around a plant, but why is it so important for fruits?

TIA Robb

'Heeling in' is sort of' temporary planting' - a way of protecting the roots, keeping them safe and moist while you either dig a proper planting hole, or decide where something should go. Say you 'heel in' a rose bush - you dig a hole and lay the plant in at an angle and fill the hole up again. Don't press the soil round the plant too hard because you don't want to damage its roots. You can do this with most bare rooted plants.

You can also 'heel in' twigs to create, say, a hedge. This is like taking hard wood cuttings. Dig a trench about 4 inches deep, cut yourself a series of sticks about 10 inches long (hawthorn for example) and stick them in the hole. Back fill, water, and leave them to make roots. When they show signs of life (probably next season), dig them up and put them in their proper place. Raspberry canes will do the same thing but they take longer to make good bushes to produce fruit (a couple of years at least).
Keep the plot cultivated, that's the best way to ensure its future.

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phaxl

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Blackcurrants
« Reply #6 on: October 11, 2006, 06:19 »
Thanks Oliver,

I like it when you learn something new everyday :D
I have some raspberry canes on order for November, do I remove them from their packaging while I dig the hole or will they be OK for a day or so?

Many thanks

Robb



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