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My gooseberry bush is three years old it only had 6 gooseberry on this year which I was told there would not be much. The branches are long and it's a bit gangly I was wondering if I could cut it back so it makes it more of a bush but then someone said it won't give fruit next year. Advice on what to do please




It needs to be in the ground really if you can manage it - they don't seem to do very well in pots. You can cut a few inches off the straggly branches now but the main prune is done in late February. Ideally the bush should have a short little "trunk" with an open framework of branches above it. In Feb. have a good look at it and select say half a dozen upward facing branches to form a bowl shaped framework. Cut out completely any that are crossing others and cut back all the other branches to about a foot or 18 inches long. Any side shoots on the main stems you leave should be shortened to about three or four buds.Keeping a nice open shape helps to avoid attacks by American mildew - you may have wisely bought a resistant variety but you still need the shape. Its quite hard to describe without a diagram but there is quite a lot of info on line which would help you to see what I mean.
A heavy prune will not stop it fruiting.
Have you been feeding it a lot with a general fertiliser - it looks as though its been getting more nitrogen than it needs and not enough potash so it s growing wood at the expense of flowers. Stop feeding it now. When you prune in Feb give it some sulphate of potash but no nitrates this time. You should only need a general fertiliser if it remains in the pot, but in any case don't give it more than one lot and none this year.

28 Jul, 2015


For one thing, it is in a pot, which will drastically reduce the crop, especially if it misses a watering or two. It also looks like it is in a shady spot, which will also reduce the crop.

31 Jul, 2015


It's was a cutting my mum gave me from hers. Yes I've been watering it with mirical grow when I've watered all my plants and flowers. They are in the sun from 11 in the morning till sunset. Is this to much. I will try get it in the Garden too. Thanks for all your comments :)

1 Aug, 2015


In California, A half day of sun would be plenty, but in North Yorkshire, it may not be enough. Modern Miracle-Gro has a reasonable amount of potash, but it also has a bit much nitrogen for a cool climate fruiting plant. Steragram makes a good point about it needing to be in the ground--for a full crop in a container it needs to be in a big tub, at least 70 cm wide and deep.

1 Aug, 2015


You should stop feeding it at all at this time of year - its fine for annuals but shrubs tend to grow too soft if fed for too long. Don 't feed it through the summer at all. The amount of sun its getting is probably OK but more would be better -when it goes in the ground try not to put it in more shade than its in now! Mine are in full sun all day until shade from about four in the afternoon and my gooseberries got a first prize at the local show, but we are a lot further south than you. Correct pruning and potash are the important factors. A good mulch over the winter would be good too. Some washed seaweed if you are within reach of the coast, otherwise chopped leaves or home made compost. When i said prune in Feb I hadn't noticed you're in N Yorks - better make that March!

1 Aug, 2015

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