Currants

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The origin and morphological characteristics

Currants (Ribes) belongs to the family of “Saxifragaceae”. Many species of this type occurs on the Polish territory in its natural state. They were the beginning of the cultivated varieties. Cultivated varieties of black currants come from R. nigrum, a red currant and white come from R. rubrum, R. petraeum, R. vulgare and R. multiflorum.

Currant bush habit is more or less spherical. Plants grow up to 2 m and grow for many years. A characteristic feature of currants is the ability to produce strong shoots from the root crown or from  the older canes. The stems branch out and have a variety of short shoots.

Currant roots date back to 100-120 cm depth, while the main mass is located at a depth of 40 cm. Leaves of various sizes with 3-5 flaps. The flowers are gathered in clusters. These are entomophilus plants. The fruit is a berry formed from the ovary and overgrown  bottom of the flower.

The biological properties

Plants of red and white currants are characterized by high resistance to frost. Black currant is less durable. Flowers white and red currants, although very early in development are far more resistant to spring frosts than blackcurrant flowers. Even among black currant cultivars there is a large range of frost resistance. Earlier flowering varieties are more susceptible to frost than the late-flowering, or with a long flowering period.

Blackcurrant plants live shorter than the red and white currants. It is assumed that black currant plantations worth to keep for 10-12 years, and red currant over 15 years.

Differences in ripening black currant varieties are 15 days. Contrast between the red currant varieties differences in maturation are much larger and in extreme cases reach up to 30 days. It is also possible the retention of red currant fruit for at least 10-15 days.

Currant varieties differ in vigor and disease resistance. First harvest takes place in the second year after planting. Seed production of currant bushes growing in every age. Collections reach peak values at 4-6 years after planting black currants, and 7-9 years after planting red currant, and then decreases.

The term planting of currants

The most suitable planting date is autumn, as the plants begin very early spring vegetation. Also, for organizational reasons the autumn term plantation establishment is more suitable than the spring. Most currant bushes are planted in October or November. But if we plant them in spring, do it as soon as possible (March, April). The delay spring planting is not conducive to the adoption of the bushes and makes them weaker growth in the first year. Currants on commercial plantations, suitable for combine harvest are planted in spacing of 4.0 x 0.5 meters per hectare is about 5,000 shrubs.

Selection of position

The cultivation of currants are best suited to areas of plains or slightly raised, including those with a slight slope. At an angle of 5 degrees above the ground will be harder to carry out treatments and harvesting machinery. Position sheltered from the wind is considered better than the open spaces. Under the currant plantations to devote agricultural land classes I-IV. Shrubs planted on the best soils slightly acidic, with pH 6.2 – 6.7, loam or sandy loam, which have deeper clay or loamy sand.