How to Grow Red Currants? Redcurrants are easy to grow and prefer a chilly atmosphere, therefore they thrive in cooler climates and northern areas. They prefer the sun but may take slight shade. They may be trained into compact shapes and grown in containers, making them perfect for small spaces. The glossy fruits have a tangy taste that is great eaten fresh or cooked to produce sweets, jelly, or jam.
- Jonkheer van Tets
- Red Lake
How to Grow Red Currants?
Watering: In dry conditions, water newly planted redcurrants well, while long-established plants rarely require irrigation. Water plants in containers on a regular basis during the growing season since compost dries out rapidly. Water newly planted redcurrants thoroughly in dry weather, while long-established plants rarely require irrigation. And Water container plants on a regular basis during the growing season since compost dries out quickly.
Feeding: Feed redcurrants growing in the ground in early spring with a high-potassium general fertiliser, such as Vitax Q4. Spread one and a half handfuls per square metre/yard around the base. To discourage weed development, apply a layer of garden compost or well-rotted farmyard manure mulch.
Mulching: From late winter to early spring, feed plants in containers with a liquid fertiliser every two weeks. Scrape out the top few centimetres of compost and top it with a mix of potting compost and controlled-release fertiliser granules every spring.
Repotting: Every three years, repot containerized plants, either into a larger container or back into the same pot after removing a third of the roots and compost.
Pruning: Trained redcurrants, such as single-stemmed or multiple-stemmed cordons and standards, are suitable if you have limited growing space. If you have more space, cultivate an open-centred, goblet-shaped shrub with eight to ten well-spaced branches over a short robust stem that is 10-15cm (4-6in) tall.
Propagating: Redcurrants can be propagated by taking 30cm (1ft) long hardwood cuttings. Prunings from young plants should be used, but not those from older plants, which may harbour disease.
2. Plant to Grow Red Currants
Redcurrants can be cultivated as open-centred bushes or as single-stemmed or multi-stemmed cordons to save space. They can also be grown as standards, with a bushy head on a tall stem and fashioned like a lollipop. These are typically purchased ready-trained, employing grafted or budded plants with a distinct ‘trunk’ of 1-1.2m (312-4ft) in height.
How to Plant?
Between November and March, plant bare-root redcurrants. Redcurrants can be planted in containers all year, but they will establish better if planted in autumn or winter.
- Bushes should be spaced 1.5-1.8m (5-6ft) apart.
- Cordons should be spaced 38-45cm (15-18in) apart.
Cordon plants require support, which should be installed prior to or during planting. This is typically a system of horizontal wires separated 60cm (2ft) and 1.2m (4ft) apart that are attached to posts, a wall, or a fence. Insert a 1.7m (512ft) bamboo cane to support the main stem as well.
Where to Plant?
Redcurrants may grow in a variety of soil types but prefer moist, well-drained soil. They thrive in full sun but can be grown against a shaded, north-facing wall, however, the fruit will develop later and be less tasty. They prefer a protected location away from strong winds, but avoid planting in frost pockets because late frosts might harm the blossoms.
Cordon redcurrants can also be grown in big containers, preferably at least 45cm (18in) wide. Fill with soil-based John Innes No.3 compost, but multi-purpose compost will suffice.
Redcurrants are ready to pick in early summer when they are brightly coloured, firm, and delicious. Whole trusses (or strigs) can be used right away or stored in the fridge for a few days. Alternatively, store the trusses in freezer bags and freeze them for later use.
4 Pets and Disease
Gooseberry sawfly: Pale green, caterpillar-like larvae defoliate plants quickly and severely, often leaving bushes to bare stems before harvest time. The damage begins in the mid to late spring, but because the insect can have three generations each year, issues can last all summer.
Remedy; From mid-spring on, thoroughly inspect plants, paying specific attention to the undersides of leaves and the centre of the bush. Hand-pick the larvae out.
Birds: Birds, particularly pigeons, can be a nuisance by consuming seedlings, buds, leaves, fruit, and vegetables.
Remedy: Cover the plants with netting or fleece to keep birds away. Scarecrows and bird-scaring mechanisms can help for a while, but covering plants with horticultural fleece or mesh is the most reliable means of protection.
Gooseberry Mildew: This mildew produces a powdery grey and white fungus on the leaves and stems of plants. Mildew can also occur on fruit, creating ripening issues.
Also Read: How to Grow Gooseberries?