Start a new thread

1 to 15 of 15 replies


I have 2 red currant bushes which were planted about a year ago. They did not fruit this year and I know they need pruning. My instinct is to leave them but I think I have read somewhere they need to be cut back now. I am new to fruit growing. When and where do I make the cut, please?


They need pruning after fruiting so I would leave them this year and look at them again next year. 

They are not as easy to prune as Blackcurrents where I just cut back hard the old fruited wood.  However Redcurrants also bear their fruit on old wood. Prune bushes by removing diseased or only very old branches in winter, then prune new growth back to two buds in early summer to keep plants compact. Leaders should be pruned to outward facing buds unless the branches are bending or crossing, keep the middle open, they then should be cut to upward + outward  facing buds. Best left until they have started fruiting.

Good luck,

But, red currant bushes are very prolific. You will prob have more fruit than you need. Bjay, I expect you will get plenty of fruit in few months' time after which you can think about pruning



Thank you all. I will leave them and swat up on prunung in the mean time for the season after.


Bjay- excellent book on pruning is 'How to prune' by the late John Cushnie. My copy is full of scribbles in the margins.

I also keep a diary of when & what I did to my bushes each yr. The weather also plays a part & last yr we had very liitle sun up here!

Looking at the latest forecast I've already told OH that shall be pruning my fruit bushes this Saturday! J.

Not sure just how much to cut off my redcurrant bushes.  New growth or old ??

Paddy5, if your bushes are over three years old then they get pruned once in summer and once in winter. In summer, after gathering the fruit,  cut the side shoots ( this year's growth) back to 5 leaves. Don't touch the main upward pointing branches , the leaders, unless they are curled up by aphids and then only cut off what you have to to make them healthy. In winter, from Nov. to Mar., cut the leaders, the main upward pointing branches , by a half to a bud pointing the way you want the plant to grow next year. Then, go back to the laterals that you timmed back in the summer, and cut them back again to three buds. As the plant gets older you will have to cut out some of the older leaders to make way for stronger, fitter shoots. But that is it. It's not as complicated as it sounds.

You don't say how many bushes you have, but I have 2 four-year old plants and I've had so many redcurrants this year I left half of them for the birds.


We were also blessed, the birds left half for us!

Hi all,


On the subject of leaders, I planted a new bush from a nursery last year, it was a cordon.  I did not cut the leader after I planted it as it seems to be suggested I should have.


Should I do it now or wait until early next year, I haven't ruined my redcurrant by not doing it have I? :/


My fruit growing "bible" says of redcurrant cordons:

"In winter, after planting, shorten the leader by one half to a side pointing bud. Cut back all laterals to one inch long (above a bud) and remove any laterals lower than 4 inches. 

"From late June to early July, cut back the current year's side shoots to 4-5 leaves. Tie the leader yo the cane but do not cut it.

"The following winter, cut the leader back to leave 6 inches of new growth."

I suppose you could begin at the second paragraph.

I just prune out some of the old wood

If you simply aim to get plenty of new growth every year you will get plenty of fruit.  I look to remove old wood and to create spurs on last year's wood.  

I pruned both red and blackcurrant bushes (two of each) last year. Redcurrant has gone potty this year. Although advice is to prune back I have not, hoping the currants might be hidden from the birds which took virtually everything last year, along with the cherries, plums, grapes - will this work do you think? Birds are the biggest problem I have for all the fruit. 

Sign up or log in to post a reply