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Posted: Tue Aug 09, 2016 3:13 pm
i have just got an allotment and it has some gooseberrie bushes on it and not very meny berries on them i was just wundering how hard can you prune the bushes and when also will it make them any better or is just best to dig them out and start afresh
Posted: Tue Aug 09, 2016 7:17 pm
My main problem with the gooseberry is the sawfly... Due to annual attacks my bush never grew well, so I've not really had occasion (and therefore no experience) with pruning!
Posted: Tue Aug 09, 2016 9:15 pm
Our gooseberry has been threatened with digging up several times, but not pruning. We threatened to dig it up if it didn't fruit the other year, we had one single gooseberry, not much more any year after.
Posted: Wed Aug 10, 2016 7:33 am
I prune all my berry bushes to allow air to circulate I read somewhere that opening them up into a sort of bowl shape, so all the growth is facing outward and the centre is more of less clear helps stop all the various moulds etc. It seems to work pretty well, I don't do it every year, just when it looks to be filling up again. I think the crop is better the year after I've pruned but I couldn't be absolutely certain of that.
Still, if you've got a new allotment it's worth living with it to see what's growing - there may be some gems hidden away!
Posted: Wed Aug 10, 2016 3:38 pm
i think i will give it a good seaing to at the end of august as i am on holliday so somthing to look faward to
Posted: Wed Aug 10, 2016 4:07 pm
I was once advised to remove the top layer of soil under the gooseberry and mulch with fresh material, to reduce the sawfly - I only managed to do that once, but it definitely helped, so maybe that's another thing to consider...
Posted: Wed Aug 10, 2016 6:06 pm
I zoomed in on your photo of your allotment and if the gooseberries are that clump in front of you neighbours wooden greenhouse, then you don't have a problem with sawfly.
I would suggest that how ever many bushes you have there, they are far too close and that is why they are not producing as you would like.
If that allotment were mine, I would cut foot long healthy shoots off in November, remove the thorns and push them into cultivated soil about 2 feet apart. In 2 years time you will have nice strong new bushes and you can then dig up the old ones and dispose of them.
Posted: Wed Aug 10, 2016 6:53 pm
thanks for that Tony
i think i am going to give them a good clear out and see what i can make of it
Posted: Thu Aug 11, 2016 9:12 am
And see what they taste like before you do too much to them... Some gooseberries are nicer than others, it might not be worth the effort of renewing them!