Blackcurrant pruning

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Odsox
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Blackcurrant pruning

Post: #276020 Odsox
Sat Aug 24, 2013 9:18 am

Does anybody do it, pruning blackcurrants that is. :iconbiggrin:

I know the theory, remove a third of the older branches every year, so that the bush renews itself every three years, and that it fruits better on new wood. But I have to admit I never have.
I have 2 blackcurrant bushes, one early (Ben Lomond) and one late (Ben Tirran) and neither get anything done to them apart from picking the fruit. Both bushes are between 10 and 15 years old (I planted them but can't remember when exactly) and have always produced more than enough fruit for the two of us, this year just under 9 kilos off the 2 from early July until last week, plus quite a lot taken by blackbirds and thrushes.
So what's with this pruning lark ? Both bushes are shaped well and the only "pruning" they get it when a branch breaks under the weight of fruit.
So what exactly could I expect if I followed the correct growing procedure ?
Tony

Disclaimer: I almost certainly haven't a clue what I'm talking about.

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Re: Blackcurrant pruning

Post: #276022 Green Aura
Sat Aug 24, 2013 10:14 am

I've done it a couple of times - both times on huge old bushes I inherited.

The idea is to not only cut out the old wood but also to let in light, as far as I remember! The instructions I followed called for pruning in such a way as to make a sort of basket shape with what is left.

I have to admit I've never taken it quite that far but I have removed quite a lot of the internal wood so it's much airier (?). I cut the old wood back to the base and a little trim here and there to make the newer stuff more evenly shaped, if that makes sense.
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Re: Blackcurrant pruning

Post: #276024 diggernotdreamer
Sat Aug 24, 2013 11:41 am

I am going to prune my blackcurrants this year but only because they have some broken and overcrowded branched. I am seriously considering not pruning my apple trees, we had old trees in our last garden that produced loads of apples despite having been neglected, I have pruned trees an they produce lots of whippy bits, I was thinking of taking out crossing branches only, is this a mad idea?

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Re: Blackcurrant pruning

Post: #276195 Millymollymandy
Fri Sep 06, 2013 6:35 pm

I prune every year to make more space because even though my two redcurrants and two blackcurrants are spaced out more than 'the book' says, they still grow into each other. I prune during the dormant season according to my RHS book and not now like Monty Don does. However they never grow like 'the book' and my blackcurrants are always so weighed down I have to prop up the stems which trail in the ground with all the fruit. Given I can get 8kg+ from two bushes I certainly want to chop off loads of the branches. :lol:

Out of interest how many years can they be left in situ because they show no signs of diminishing fruit production after 7 years.
boboff wrote:Oh and just for MMM, :hugish: (thanks)


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Re: Blackcurrant pruning

Post: #276196 Millymollymandy
Fri Sep 06, 2013 6:37 pm

Oh and they are still both covered in fruit because I only picked a small amount and no birds are interested in either red or black currants, which means a thousand young plants to weed out next year. :roll:
boboff wrote:Oh and just for MMM, :hugish: (thanks)


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Re: Blackcurrant pruning

Post: #276209 boboff
Sat Sep 07, 2013 10:43 am

Last year I did as suggested on here, prune with fruit on, take the cuttings strip the fruit and the make new plants from the cuttings, this worked very well, and all the cuttings took, but I have about 50 bushes now, which is too many.

I think just nip out damaged and crossing branches really is all that is needed, use the wood for cuttings, or as I did this year used it as a hot smoke for Tandori Chicken kebabs, lush!
Millymollymandy wrote:Bloody smilies, always being used. I hate them and they should be banned.
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Re: Blackcurrant pruning

Post: #276210 diggernotdreamer
Sat Sep 07, 2013 11:28 am

Boboff, why do you continue the torture yourself, cull the bushes, you don't need all that fruit, you hate jam and people who buy jam, give yourself some peace and freecycle the lot (you don't even have to see the happy smiling freecyclers, just leave them by the gate to help themselves)

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Re: Blackcurrant pruning

Post: #276264 boboff
Tue Sep 10, 2013 11:49 am

I don't hate Jam, or people, I just I can't eat 100lb of it a week, and it's not so much the people, but the anxiety of going out!

It's okay, I think I am encouraging wild life!

TBF this year has been a great year for fruit, hence the glut and I really do hate to waste it!
Millymollymandy wrote:Bloody smilies, always being used. I hate them and they should be banned.
No I won't use a smiley because I've decided to turn into Boboff, as he's turned all nice all of a sudden. Grumble grumble.

http://boboffs.blogspot.co.uk/

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Re: Blackcurrant pruning

Post: #276273 dave45
Tue Sep 10, 2013 9:31 pm

I planted two bushes outside the chicken-coop wire fence and pruned them last year fan-style. Great success. The two-dimensionality seems to work well, and the branches grow over two meters, which is handy as they are easier to pick. I still have other bushes traditional style and hack them back when they get a bit dense.

And yes - you can easily get too many blackcurrants. And I like the jam. Tried wine too, but it was a bit strange - I think it needs time to mellow

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Re: Blackcurrant pruning

Post: #276315 Millymollymandy
Fri Sep 13, 2013 11:33 am

Cripes Boboff, I get 8kg easily from just 2 bushes!!

This year I left most of the black and redcurrants on the bushes and they are still there. No birds seem to like them. :(
boboff wrote:Oh and just for MMM, :hugish: (thanks)


http://chateaumoorhen.blogspot.com/

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Re: Blackcurrant pruning

Post: #276320 Millymollymandy
Fri Sep 13, 2013 11:53 am

Oh gawd I'm repeating myself. :lol:
boboff wrote:Oh and just for MMM, :hugish: (thanks)


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Re: Blackcurrant pruning

Post: #276323 boboff
Fri Sep 13, 2013 12:08 pm

Pardon?

I picked about 60lb this year! Lest the rest, I think the birds liked mine!

It's been a great year for Wildlife, so many more Butterflies, Moths, Dragon Flies, young Robins etc.
Millymollymandy wrote:Bloody smilies, always being used. I hate them and they should be banned.
No I won't use a smiley because I've decided to turn into Boboff, as he's turned all nice all of a sudden. Grumble grumble.

http://boboffs.blogspot.co.uk/

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Re: Blackcurrant pruning

Post: #276324 Millymollymandy
Fri Sep 13, 2013 12:12 pm

You are mad!

I agree about the bugs - it's been fantastic. Just seen a spider kill a Large White though and that one I was not going to save! :lol:

Must go get me specs on and go egg squidging again..... :roll:
boboff wrote:Oh and just for MMM, :hugish: (thanks)


http://chateaumoorhen.blogspot.com/


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