A guide to choosing Currant bushes

Please find below some information that you may find helpful in selecting and buying currant bushes:

Growth habit and training. As the name implies currant bushes are normally grown as bushes. However, red and white currants - but NOT blackcurrants - can also be grown as cordons which a have a single vertical main stem with short branches. In good growing conditions bushes can grow up to 1.5m/5ft in height and spread. You should therefore allow 1.5m/5ft between bushes. Cordons can be planted much closer together with a spacing of 30cm/1ft. We supply two year old bush plants usually with three or more branches. These can be trained as cordons by selecting and growing the most suitable branch and removing the rest.

Cropping season. The earliest currants ripen in late June in southern England and the latest varieties in August. Each variety has a relatively short period of ripening through that season. If you plan to grow more than one variety, you should choose varieties with the minimum overlap of cropping to spread your season. Blackcurrants can be frozen for culinary use through the rest of the year.

Growing in containers. Currant bushes can be grown in containers and planter. Use a soil based John Innes No 3 compost and 20L or larger pots.

Pollination. All currants are self-fertile and individual varieties can be grown on their own.