How to grow currants: a guide tocultivation of red, black and white currant. From planting to pruning, tips for growing in pots or in the open field.
If you have a garden or a terrace, you can devote yourself to the cultivation of fresh fruits and vegetables: you will save money and have fresh fruit and vegetables at your fingertips!
It is a fruit with different nutritional properties: it has a fair amount of vitamin C and antioxidants, which slow down cellular aging. The same is true for other berries. According to experts, the blackcurrant it is diuretic, purifying, astringent and febrifuge. In phytotherapy the fruit has various uses, among many, it is used against gout, joint disorders and psychophysical stress. In this regard we will now show you how to grow currants following some useful indications.
Red currant, black currant and white currant plant
The genrecurrantbelongs to the Grossulariaceae family. The family is very large: there are about 150 species. The most suitable for cultivation for the consumption of edible fruits are:
- White currant,Ribes sativum
- Blackcurrant,Ribes nigrum
- Red currant, ibes rubrum
These species, like all plants of the currant genus, areperennial shrubs, deciduous (they lose all their leaves in the autumn period) and have a bushy habit. Depending on the variety chosen and also the cultivation technique, currant plants can reach heights of between 1 and 3 meters.
When to plant currants:period of planting
Autumn is the best time to startcultivate the currant.
Red currant, white currant and black currant Yes they can plantin November, when the plants have lost almost all their leaves and are in vegetative rest. In this way, the plant will be subjected to a lower stress load.
How to grow currants
It is good to point out that these wonderful berry shrubs are very cold hardy, although it is good to remember that the flowers can be damaged by late frosts. The instructions we will see are valid for thecultivation of red, black or white currants.
Where to plant currants?
When planting the plants, pay attention to exposure: currant cannot withstand strong winds, cold currents and direct exposure to sunlight in summer. Therefore place the plant in a very bright but sheltered environment: a shady or partial shade is also fine.
Prefer deep, humus-rich, slightly acidic soils. This is especially true for those who wantgrow currants in pots.
How to water currant plants
Do not worry about irrigation: plants are generally satisfied with rainwater, except in periods of particular summer drought.
Practice pruning periodically, eliminating overgrown branches and those on which the plant has fructified for a couple of consecutive years: the basal suckers must also be thinned, which tend to sprout in large quantities.
In spring, apply mature organic fertilizer to the foot of the plant while in autumn, prefer a potassium-based fertilizer.
Potassium sulphate is very useful for strengthening the tissues and increasing the resistance of plants to late frosts, excellent for preventing any damage to the flowers and above all for increasing fruit production.
Where to buy potassium sulfate? In garden centers, at agricultural consortia or by taking advantage of online sales. On Amazon, a 1.25 kg pack of potassium sulfate is offered at a price of 19.28 euros with free shipping. It is useful for all plants that fear the cold.
For all information, I refer you to the page:Vitax potassium fertilizer
Diseases of the currant
Before opening the flowers and after the autumn harvest, use preventive treatments against gray mold powdery mildew, based on Bordeaux mixture. There are many diseases that can affect currants, for example, red currants are particularly sensitive to root rot and cochineal infestations.
How to prune currants
As stated it is important to carry out periodic pruning. When to prune currants? Between the months of February and March. It can be pruned in the absence of snow.
How to prune currants? What is done in winter is a renewal pruning thanks to which the plant, during the following seasons, will produce more fruit. If you are wondering why your currant plant bears little fruit, the fault may be linked to incorrect pruning.
Cut one or two branches, at the level of the stump (therefore at the base), the oldest ones that are now over 5 years old. Go to shorten even the excessively long shoots and cut the dead branches, broken or damaged by the wind.
These cuts are used to avoid the aging of the foliage. If, every year, one or two very old (five-year-old) clumps are severed, you will find yourself, within a few years, with a completely renewed plant.
Which scissors to use
Let's talk about pruning shears. Which to use to prune shrub plants such as currants, blueberries, gooseberries, red raspberries ... but also blackberry and rose brambles?
Undoubtedly a pair of ratchet scissors that make the cut "cleaner" even in the case of older and harder branches, such as the old blueberry tufts to be cut at the base. If you already have the classic “double-edged” scissors at home, you can use these, but be careful to make clean cuts.
The ratchet system allows to distribute the cutting effort evenly without damaging the plant at the time of cutting and above all eliminating the risk of fungal diseases and facilitating tissue healing.
Where to buy ratchet scissors? In any garden center, from the nursery or on Amazon. A good item with excellent value for money can be found on Amazon for 8.05 euros with free shipping. For all information, I refer you to this address.