Is there anything better than picking fresh fruit that you have grown yourself? It’s one of those ‘memorable and defining’ moments in life. One that often gets people hooked on growing their own produce, this fruit planting guide will help you get started with growing raspberries, blackberries, grapevines and currants.
Raspberries and Blackberries
Raspberries and blackberries are very easy to grow in different varieties of soil and partial sun, even in small spaces. They are low maintenance yet highly rewarding. We are associated with the leading raspberry plants (‘canes’) producer in Europe. Grown on the sandy fens of Norfolk and are the best quality you can buy!
Raspberries and Blackberries Planting Guide
Plant 60cm (2ft) in rows, along walls or fences, or in beds, where further support from posts may be needed. You can also grow them in large pots (40cm+ diameter), potting 3 – 5 canes around the edges. Water in well after planting.
Cut down any raspberry canes that have already fruited in November, leaving long canes for the following year’s bigger crops. Summer-fruiting varieties crop in July on last year’s growth, so when their season finishes cut down the fruiting stems. New shoots will soon emerge, and next year’s fruit will be produced on these ripened canes. Don’t cut these down, as they will provide the fruit next season. If you would appreciate fresh raspberries over a long season, grow at least one summer and one autumn variety of raspberry bushes.
Spring is the best time to prune blackberry bushes. The canes usually grow one season; produce fruit the next season, then die. Once the canes have fruited and died, you should cut them back to just above the ground.
Grapevines are perfect for growing in pots or training up walls, terraces, pergolas and other supports. They will love a sunny and sheltered spot on your patio, in your garden or in a conservatory.
Grape Vines Planting Guide
It is best to plant grapevines in the spring, we suggest planting them roughly 1.2 – 1.5m apart. Dig over your soil and add some good quality compost and fertiliser to enrich the site. Keep them well watered within their first year, especially in warm and dry spells.
As soon as the grapes feel soft, they are ready to be picked. But the best way to tell is by taste! The sweeter the grape, the readier they are for harvesting. Dessert grapes should be eaten soon after they have been picked, whereas wine grapes are best pulped and made into wine.
Home-grown currants allow you to enjoy that just-picked, fresh taste that is simply delicious. They’re fantastic whether you eat them raw or use them in recipes.
Currants Planting Guide
Plant bare-root or potted currants, as soon as possible to allow for establishment before the hotter weather. Soak bare roots in water for at least an hour before planting, this will bring the plants out of dormancy.
Dig a hole about an inch longer than the length of the roots and double the width. Space them roughly 1.5m between plants. Fill the hole with soil and firm it down around the plant as you go.
Keep an eye on your plants during dry spells and make sure they are watered well. The best way to tell when currants are ready is by colour and taste, but the fruits should still be firm.