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Cultivation Guide – Gooseberries

Gooseberries will succeed in most soils, and rotted compost added before planting is beneficial, mulch each spring to maintain fertility. Plant to same depth as lifted at the nursery. Space 5′ between bushes, single cordons 1′, double cordons 2′, triple cordons 3′ apart down the row.


As birds can disbud the bushes, delay pruning until the spring. Cut the leaders back by half to a third, always to an upward facing bud, this will build up strong branches. Lateral (side) shoots can be trimmed as required with the main objective being to form an open centre for easy picking and allowing free circulation of air to reduce the risk of Mildew.


Sulphate of Potash in early spring (February) at 2oz per bush, or a general high Potash fertiliser. Sulphate of Ammonia can be used to promote growth if required, but too much Nitrogen can cause soft growth and increase the risk of Mildew, so only use as required.

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