How to grow the Ribes in a biological way
The Ribes (Ribes L., 1753) is a plant that even if it grows spontaneous can be grown in your garden or in the farm provided that you follow some indications. The fruits of this plant can be pigmented in black, red or even white. The techniques given here refer, with small variations to: Ribes nigrum, Ribes rubrum and Ribes rubrum L. “White Grape”.
The Ribes is a plant that tolerates the cold well but that for the period of its flowering this can be damaged by late frosts.
For the plant we must remember that the currant can not stand strong winds and too cold and direct exposure to sunlight, especially in summer. The soil where to implant it must have a slightly acidic pH (except for blackcurrant that prefers slightly alkaline soils), well endowed with organic substance, not clayey and free of stagnations.
For the fertilization it is advisable to intervene with compost or mature manure in the winter period and reintegration with the ashes of the pruning burn in the early spring period.
The cultivation of the currant can be done by seed (but is not recommended for slow growth), by cutting or by buying the young plants in a nursery.
For irrigation this must be limited only to summer drought periods or if the spring season (especially in the south) is particularly dry.
For the pruning of the black currant, it is advisable to periodically eliminate the overgrown branches and those on which the plant has fructified for a couple of consecutive years; Basal suckers should also be removed, which tend to grow continuously. For cutting operations always make sure that the working parts are clean and very sharp, in order to avoid tearing the cutting tissues and introduces with the cutting of fungal spores and other disease vectors.
For the form of breeding you can go from the bush to the espalier; it depends on whether the plant is family type or for company productions. In the case of the espalier you can choose sixths very similar to the vine.
For the health of the plant we must above all be careful to the oidium that we can block in a preventive way at the end of winter – early spring with Bordeaux mixture. I remember that especially the red currant is more sensitive to root rot and to infestations of cochineals. For rotting, however, careful management of water supplies is sufficient, even through the choice of well-drained soil. Marseille soap is excellent for cochineals.
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