Posts tagged ‘pruning’

How to Prune Gooseberries

Pruning soft fruit is essential to get the best crop and to minimise pests and diseases.  Gooseberries are no exception.  Following on from my recent text post on pruning redcurrants I have put together a video on how to prune your gooseberries.  This is a job for wintertime when the plants are dormant.  Enjoy!

Redcurrant pruning success

In my previous post I described how I go about pruning my redcurrants to get the best crop possible. Well it looks like the work has paid off as the number of flowers on the redcurrant bushes is amazing and it looks like I am in for a bumper crop. Take a look at the photo to see what I mean.

Wonderfully abundant redcurrant flowers after this year's pruning.

Wonderfully abundant redcurrant flowers after this year's pruning.

How to Prune Red Currants for a Bumper Crop

Winter is the time to be pruning your red currants to ensure you get the best possible crop for next year. Red currants are a delicious soft fruit that is well worth the effort growing. Like most soft fruit they degrade quickly and transport poorly, so anything you buy commercially is likely to be substandard compared to what you have grown at home. Red currants fruit on established fruiting spurs, and there are certain pruning techniques to support the development of these spurs. We are going to run through these here. If you are someone who prefers to what a video on how this is done, pop on over to my page on pruning gooseberries for a short video. Many of the techniques are very similar. The pruning techniques described here apply to white currants as well, but not black currants as these have different growing and fruiting habits.

Prune for a goblet shape.

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After the previous growing season, your currants can look pretty wild.

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How to prune – the fundamentals.

It’s winter here in Melbourne at the moment and for many plants it’s the time of year to be pruning.  This is especially so in the fruit garden.  However good pruning technique is essential to avoid the introduction of disease and to avoid dieback in stems.  While I don’t claim to be an expert, I have put together a short video with what I have found to be essential information on how to prune.  Hope it’s helpful!

So did you find this useful?  Anything else you would like to know?  Write me a comment below and let me know, or share it with your friends.

Raspberry pruning – growing a good crop for next year

Another job to be doing at this time of the year is preparing your raspberries for the next year’s crop.  Summer fruiting raspberries bear fruit on the previous year’s growth, so to keep the bed clear and concentrate all their energy into the fruting canes, it is necessary to clear out all of the old canes at the end of the growing season.

This is also a good time to give the bed a good dose of fertiliser and a layer of mulch.  Raspberries are shallow rooted crops and need fertile soil to produce well and the area needs to be kept free of weeds.  It also helps to keep the moisture in to encourage plump fruit.

 

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Last year's canes are brown in colour. This year's are pale green.

So start by working out which are the current season’s canes.  These are the ones you want to keep.  They will usually be pale green, as in the picture above.  Some varities have brown bases, but they will be green higher up the canes.  Older canes are brown all the way up.  Once you have worked out which is which, cut the old canes off at ground level. continue reading..

Care of your secateurs – sharpening

Autumn is upon us now and was early in coming this year. The temptation can be to think that following the hectic pace of summer in the garden, when it seems like everything is coming is coming at once, that autumn is a time to slow down. The reality is very different with a lot of work to be done clearing away the spent summer crops and preparing the ground for any winter plantings.

In addition for me the autumn has become a time to start pruning my fruit trees. Conventional wisdom has it that pruning should be done in the winter when the tree is dormant. However I have started to adopt autumn pruning as advocated by Peter Cundell from Gardening Australia. The theory is that by pruning in the autumn the tree has a chance to repair the cuts and is less likely to suffer from disease as a result. The logic seems sound to me.

However regardless of the time of year that you do your pruning you need to ensure your secateurs are sharp. Blunt secateurs cause rough cuts that are more likely to let in disease. I thought I would just talk you through my secateur care process.

As you can see from the first picture the edge on the blade is rather dull.

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The dull edge of the secateurs prior to sharpening

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