Blackcurrants

Blackcurrants prefer a well drained, fertile soil, in a sunny position which is sheltered from cold winds. The site should be well worked to a depth of 25cm (10") incorporating plenty of organic material such as well rotted manure or garden compost. Care should be taken to pick out all roots of perennial weeds. Apply a base dressing of general fertiliser as per the Manufacturers recommendation.

Planting should take place as soon as possible, provided soil and weather conditions are suitable, e.g. not too wet or frozen. Remove the protective covering from around the roots and soak in water for 20 minutes should they appear at all dry. Dig a planting hole large enough to accommodate roots easily and plant about 2.5cm (1") lower than it was previously grown in the Nursery, firming the soil well. Plants should be spaced 1.2m (4') apart, with a 1.5m (5') space between rows. Immediately after planting, prune each root to 2-3 growth buds from the ground This will encourage strong new growth which will carry the following seasons’ fruit.

PRUNING
In the winter, following the first season of growth, prune to ground level all weak or damaged shoots. Thereafter pruning should take place after the fruit has been harvested, retaining strong new shoots that arise from the base of your bush. If new shoots are plentiful cut out most of the old wood which has fruited otherwise remove a third of these old branches, pruning to a strong young shoot near the base of the bush.

It is essential to prevent the plants from drying out in the first year. Keep well watered. It may also be necessary to water in dry weather as the fruits begin to swell.