If you regularly prune your gooseberries, you can expect a rich harvest. However, it is all about the right time. You can find out what that is and how you do it here.A regular cut is necessary for a rich harvest. Gooseberries belong in every snack garden. Not only are they a real delicacy directly from the shrub, they also give jams or cakes a special taste. If you want to harvest a rich crop in summer, don't forget to cut back. The spring cut to March is particularly important, as it is used primarily to rejuvenate the shrubs.
In addition, a summer cut is recommended so that the ripening berries get as much light as possible and you get even sweeter and larger fruits. So that nothing goes wrong with the pruning, we would like to explain the exact procedure to you here.
Good to know: which shoots of the gooseberry bear fruit?
The shoots of gooseberry bushes grow from the base of the root and can therefore be easily assigned to individual years.
- This year's shoots are not yet bearing fruit.
- The second and third year is the golden time of maximum fruit yield.
- In the fourth year the gooseberries on the shoot are getting smaller and rarer.
- From the fifth year on, the shoots can hardly be used for harvesting.
The rejuvenation cut in spring: get rid of the old wood!
The right time for the spring cut is February to March. The goal of the cut is to create ideal growth conditions for the viable shoots. Specifically, this means: Get rid of the old wood. Remove five-year-old shoots as close as possible to the root base with a pair of secateurs. If you need to buy new scissors, choose a model with long or extendable handles. With a small pair of hand scissors, you have to exert considerable force to cut through a tough five-year-old shoot.
In addition to old wood, you can also remove all the strongly hanging shoots that grew inwards or on the ground from last year. Ideally, the spring pruning gives you a shrub with at least eight healthy, viable shoots that do not hinder each other from growing. You can still cut these shoots, but you shouldn't cut off too many buds. This prevents the formation of mildew, which can form in the shoot tips.
For a better overview: Label shoots by year
How do you recognize the age of the shoots? Basically: The older the wood, the darker the shoot. It is possible to make the cut simply based on visual assessment. A clever help offers you the marking of the individual years with different colored or labeled rings. Such rings can easily be made from wire or parcel tape (plastic).
Cutting gooseberries in summer: more light for the fruits
Before the gooseberry ripens in July and August, it is recommended to do a summer cut. Shorten the shoots above the fruit and remove any non-bearing shoots inside the bush. This helps the berries to get more light and a little later you can enjoy bigger and sweeter gooseberries.