Red and white currants differ from blackcurrants in that they produce most of their fruit on fruit spurs which appear on older wood. These fruit spurs appear clustered closely at the base of side shoots and therefore when training try to create a goblet shaped bush with 8-12 main branches growing upwards and outwards bearing short fruit spurs. Laterals that develop on the main branches should be shortened in winter to induce fruit spurs. Terminal growth of branches should be tipped.
Once planted the Blackcurrant should be cut down to ground level. This hard pruning at planting time results in strong new growth from the base, fruit is borne on 1 year wood. During the first summer strong young branches should develop, but there will be no suggestion of fruit at this stage. The first winter after fruiting, remove a 1/4 to 1/3 of the wood, cutting right back to ground level. Once established, remove about 1/3 of the bush cutting out weak, damaged or crossed over branches. Cut back old fruiting branches to a strong shoot. Pruning can be carried out after autumn leaf fall and before spring bud burst. Blackcurrants require lots of nitrogen such as fresh poultry and cow manure.
Leaf curl is a common fungal disease of peaches and nectarines. The disease over winters in the buds of infected trees and infects in cool wet spring/summer weather.
These infected leaves are puckered, curled and much thicker than usual. Control is an application of a copper-based fungicide soon after pruning and just before bud burst in spring followed again 10-14 days later. Once you notice the symptoms it is to late to control the disease in those leaves but you can apply a light dressing of quick acting fertiliser such as sulphate of ammonia to encourage new leaf production.
*** All our trees are sprayed with a copper-based fungicide before being dispatched***